Manawatu Gorge closer to being fully functional again

Photo / Christine McKay
Photo / Christine McKay

Manawatu Gorge is one step closer to being fully functional again after steel rods were drilled into the hillside to help secure the slope.

The stretch of State Highway 3 which connects the Manawatu to the Wairarapa was closed after a large slip on August 6 last year.

The slip was cleared and the road reopened for three days, before another slip in October closed it again.

In August one lane of the road reopened, and last month both lanes were reopened, apart from two one-way sections which are controlled by lights.

Now rock-bolting work, which involves drilling steel rods into the hillside, has been completed and brought the gorge one step closer to being fully operational in all sections, Transport Agency spokesman David McGonigal said.

Crews were continuing to wrap the slope in protective netting to contain minor rock spills and were building a rockfall protection fence which was due to be completed in the next two to three weeks.

"Meanwhile, 500 metres east of the slip site, a half-bridge is being repaired following damage from a minor rockfall last month, and this work is expected to be completed next month," Mr McGonigal said.

It was expected that the road would be fully operational by the end of November at the latest.

- APNZ

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