Waka Kotahi NZ Transport Agency

SH2 Wairarapa highway improvements

11 August 2023


The new turnaround bay at Clareville opens Monday

We’d like locals and road users to be aware of the highway’s new layout and change of use in this section of road in Clareville. The new turnaround bay is expected to open this Monday.

The turnaround bay, north of Chester Road, allows drivers heading south to change direction, and it’s an important new change for residents and visitors for accessing nearby properties.

Drivers will see new road signs advising how to navigate the turnaround bay.

Leading up to the bay, people will see paint markings which form a visual ‘pocket’.  This signals drivers to slow down, stop and wait, before safely making a right turn into the bay.

This pocket will also help reduce the potential for rear-end crashes from following vehicles.  The bay itself allows drivers to turn into a safe area and wait for a clear space in oncoming traffic before heading north again on the highway.

The bay can accommodate larger vehicles, including semi-trailer trucks. It has ample lighting to help people see at night.

Here’s an animated video showing how drivers need to check for oncoming traffic from only one direction before heading onto a highway. Check it out here.



What it means for nearby residents and their visitors

Once the bay’s open, it will change the way nearby residents and their visitors, must enter and exit their properties to access the highway.

Property owners on the western side of SH2 between the turnaround bay and Wiltons Rd will now need to use this facility.  For southwards trips, residents now need to TURN LEFT when exiting their properties and drive northbound to the Wiltons Road roundabout.

For those coming out of Wiltons Road, they’ll drive around the roundabout to head south.

North of Wiltons Road, drivers will use the new Norfolk Road roundabout to make safe turns, if they need to change direction.



New wire-rope barriers

The wire-rope median barrier between Norfolk Road roundabout and Chester Road, north of Carterton, is providing a significant level of safety for road users.

It’s a first for our region, and a great safety enhancement for the highway.

Wire-rope barriers have a proven safety record and are highly effective at reducing the number of people dying in crashes by 70-80 per cent.

Wire-rope barriers do this by:

  • Preventing head-on collisions
  • Preventing vehicles rolling over after impact with the barrier
  • Preventing vehicles veering across the road toward oncoming traffic

There’s so much more to these barriers than meets the eye, check out some interesting information and videos on the Waka Kotahi website here.



SH2 safety improvement project overview

The project includes three new roundabouts at high-risk intersections along the corridor:

• SH2 and Ngaumutawa Road (improving safe access onto the heavy traffic bypass)

• SH2 and Norfolk/Cornwall Roads

• SH2 and Wiltons/East Taratahi Roads

The project includes central median wire-rope barriers, a safe turnaround area near the Clareville Saddlery/Hughes Line, and improved line marking and road surfacing along an 8.6km-long stretch of SH2.

Thank you to everyone using SH2 for your patience, care and understanding while driving past our work sites.