Concern over motorway development

by Kent Caddick

Selwyn MP Amy Adams is expressing concern at the impact the second stage of the Christchurch Southern Motorway is having on West Melton’s roads.

Stage two of the Christchurch Southern Motorway extension (CSM2) is currently under construction.

The extension is expected to halve travel time between Rolleston and Christchurch at peak times and reduce fatal and serious crashes.

“While I am a huge supporter of CSM2, I am worried about the impact it is likely to have on Weedons Ross Road, and the intersection of Weedons Ross Road and State Highway 73,” Ms Adams said.

“Given that this intersection is already very busy, I am concerned at how the inevitable further increase in traffic volumes will be managed,” Ms Adams said.

“Weedons Ross Road is not designed to cope with this amount of traffic and, given that it runs past Weedons School, the safety of children and parents needs to be considered also.”

Ms Adams, who lives in West Melton, met with the New Zealand Transport Agency (NZTA) to discuss this matter, but said she was disappointed to learn that the NZTA had not carried out specific transport modelling on these roads. 

“Of even more concern was the apparent fact that the traffic volume data being used by NZTA had not been updated since 2000, despite this area experiencing some of the fastest growth in New Zealand during the intervening period.

“This leaves West Melton residents and drivers who commute via this intersection daily without any assurance that there is an adequate plan in place to manage the growing traffic volumes at this location, and mitigate health and safety risks for drivers and pedestrians.” 

NZTA Regional Relationships Jim Harland said they are aware of the increasing issues at the Weedons Ross Road/SH73 intersection and have been monitoring traffic growth. 

“This has firstly been driven by the growth of West Melton but also with the interconnection to the Christchurch Southern Motorway stage two, Rolleston and Lincoln via Weedons Ross Road,” Mr Harland said.

“The Transport Agency is proposing an intersection upgrade in the next three year transport programme to improve safety and access, in response to the residential development and traffic growth occurring there.”