Buller District Council

Karamea road improvement projects

3rd February, 2021

Council is managing several road improvement projects along the Karamea Highway this summer season. These are directly funded by Waka Kotahi New Zealand Transport Agency as part of the Special Purposes Road programme.

This important work will improve road safety and strengthen the resilience of the vital access route in and out of the Karamea Basin.

Work is continuing on slump repairs at Tobins Site No.1 and Site No.2. This has been underway since December 2020.

Karamea Road users are advised they should anticipate 15-minute delays at the Tobins work site beginning Thursday 4 February.

The contractor WestReef had hoped to keep delays at that site to five minutes but further slumping at site during the works has meant there is no passing room for traffic while machinery is working to rebuild the extended slump area.

Council’s infrastructure delivery manager, Eric de Boer said, “The new subsidence the contractors have found shows how important it is that these roadworks are being done now. The road is a vital link for residents and businesses in the Karamea basin.  We are committed to completing this resilience and improvement work on the Karamea Special Purposes Road.”

“Council very much appreciates the patience of road users while this essential work is being done.”

From Thursday there will be 15-minute delays for road users between 7am and 5pm. The work may take up to three-weeks to be completed but could be finished earlier if site conditions remain good.

WestReef is also working on two nearby sites – Hells Gate and Siberia Corner. These works are nearing completion. There may be an additional five-minute journey delay at these sites while the works are finished. The contactor will endeavour to manage all sites with each other to lessen the impact upon overall journey time.

Two electronic roadside noticeboards, advising delay times, will be put in place at either end of the Karamea Bluff later this week.


For more information please contact



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