New Zealand to invest $171m to upgrade State Highway 1 in Kaikoura area


The New Zealand Government is planning to invest NZ$231m ($171m) to improve the 60km stretch of road on State Highway 1 between Clarence and Oaro near Kaikoura on the South Island.  

The investment is expected to improve safety and provide a higher quality road service for motorists. 

The stretch will feature wider shoulders, additional safety barriers, more stopping areas, as well as a separated cycle/walk facility between Okiwi Bay and Mangamanu. 

Speed limits for winding sections will be 80kmph to help increase safer driving.

New digital technologies will be used to provide safety messages as well as ‘tell the story’ of the coastal corridor to visitors.

The work, which will be funded through the National Land Transport Programme, has been accelerated so it can be delivered by North Canterbury Transport Infrastructure Recovery (NCTIR) alliance alongside post-earthquake repairs. 

North Canterbury Transport Infrastructure Recovery (NCTIR) is an alliance that includes New Zealand Transport Agency and KiwiRail. 

New Zealand Transport Agency Earthquake Recovery manager Steve Mutton said: “Having NCTIR deliver the improvements package as part of the highway rebuild means less disruption and increased efficiency for customers on the route.

"The route remains fragile and could be subject to short-term closures as work continues into 2018 to complete a number of improvements along the highway."

“We’re gearing up for this by bringing on additional workers so it’s not expected to have any impact on our target to reopen State Highway 1 by the end of this year.

“However, the route remains fragile and could be subject to short-term closures as work continues into 2018 to complete a number of improvements along the highway.” 

NCTIR will begin the detailed design work. 

The first stage of works is set to begin and will include improvements to Kaikoura’s west end with a proposed deviation of the state highway at Churchill Street. 


Image: New Zealand Government to improve State Highway 1 in the Kaikoura region. Photo: courtesy of NZ Transport Agency.