Route K levied ride

Deep-seated foundation problems on the last section of Route K between the cutting and the toll plaza have required nearly half a million dollars in repairs.

Tauranga City council has agreed to meet three-quarters of the $450,000 repair costs on the road, opened in 2003, with the rest funded by Fulton Hogan.

A recent council meeting was told that the problems were outside the warranty and were caused by differing rates of settlement of the road's foundations.

The solution was to resurface the road by applying 125mm to the existing sealed surface.

Work to achieve a smoother ride for vehicles was expected to be completed by the middle of this month.

Recent estimates showed the council collecting tolls of $3 million this year, meaning tolls would continue for a further 27 years if no deal was reached with the New Zealand Transport Agency to take over Route K and its $60 million debt.

Economic forecasts have improved since the council increased the toll for cars by 50c on January 1 - before that the payback period was 33 years

- Bay of Plenty Times

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