Canterbury businesses forming group to fight roading plan

Jones Rd business representatives (from left) Stew Clouston, Simon Wilson,  Brian Janssen,...
Jones Rd business representatives (from left) Stew Clouston, Simon Wilson, Brian Janssen, Allicia Beirne, Aaron Stevens,Cath Barnett and Tim Sefton are fighting to keep this intersection at Jones and Hoskyns Rds open. Photo: Geoff Sloan
Industrial and retail businesses along Jones Rd at Rolleston are forming an action group to fight the town’s proposed overbridge plans.

Representatives of businesses along the road were set to meet today to form the group and collate an alternative proposal.

Waka Kotahi NZ Transport Agency is seeking the views of the public on highway improvements, including the plans for a flyover bridge between Rolleston township and the industrial hub.

The $125 million project for Rolleston is part of the Government’s $12 billion New Zealand Upgrade Programme launched last year, which includes a $300 million package for Canterbury.

The two-lane overbridge is proposed to cross State Highway 1 from Rolleston Drive to Hoskyns Rd.

Tailored Energy Solutions on Jones Rd will be hosting the meeting at 4pm.

Project manager Stew Clouston said the first Tailored Energy Solutions and the other businesses on Jones Rd knew of the flyover, was when NZTA announced the plans on Tuesday last week.

“They have just made a plan and said: ‘This is what we want to do,’ without consulting anyone. Their answer to that is: ‘We are consulting now,’ but they are actually doing it too late,” Clouston said.

Jones Rd, Rolleston, near the intersection with Hoskyns Rd. Photo: Geoff Sloan
Jones Rd, Rolleston, near the intersection with Hoskyns Rd. Photo: Geoff Sloan
He said if the proposal went ahead as it stood, it would result in the closure of the State Highway 1/Hoskyns Rd intersection and the Hoskyns Rd/Jones Rd intersection.

This would make Jones Rd less accessible and result in a loss of business for at least some of the premises there, as well as a potential reduction in their real estate value.

However, not all representatives from the more than 40 businesses on Jones Rd are concerned about the consultation process.

Canterbury Cranes Ltd director Blair Keating said he also did not want to see access to Jones Rd cut off from Hoskyns Rd.

He said he was among more than 30 people who attended an NZTA consultation session at the district council offices on Saturday.

Most people had walked away with the feeling they were being listened to.

“This is what consultation looks like, they are holding community meetings, they are doing their job.”

NZTA director of regional relationships James Caygill said, when the proposal was announced, that the flyover, alongside intersection changes and a new service lane, would mean safer and more efficient commuter and freight routes and a freer flowing highway.

Meanwhile, NZTA is also consulting on reducing the 80km/h and 100km/h State Highway 1 speed limits from Hoskyns Rd to Dunsandel.

Between 2010 and 2019, 139 people were either killed or injured in crashes on this stretch of road.

Following last week’s announcement, NZTA held consultation sessions on Wednesday and Saturday.

It has at least two more sessions planned – August 1, 9-11am, at Rolleston Farmers Market, and August 11, 3-5pm, at Selwyn Sports Centre.

People can also send feedback to rollestonflyover@nzta.govt.nz

 

 

 

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