Whangarei commuters should be able a breathe a sigh of relief - albeit a week later than expected - as the most disruptive work along Riverside Drive wraps up.

A cycleway project got under way last week, frustrating those expecting a free run into town with the opening of a supposedly traffic-easing slip lane at the intersection of Riverside and Dave Culham drives last Monday.

However, commuters, among them Alicia Liddall, were frustrated when they were once again stuck at a snail's pace yesterday.

Ms Liddall said she was told by the council the delays now had a fresh cause - the building of a cycle path and walkway along Riverside Drive.


"The traffic is backed up so far every day when I join the queue - at least to the Onerahi shops but I have been backed up to as far as Beach Rd."

She said it was taking up to an hour to get into town from her Reotahi home.

Onerahi resident John Mcmillan agreed traffic recently had been "horrible".

"It takes about 25 minutes just to make it to the new slip lane from [Onerahi]," he said.

But the council said things should be speeding up from now on, saying work that needed to be done around low tide last week unfortunately coincided with peak traffic times. From now on, contractors would be attempting to work outside rush hour when possible.

The technical job of building the $1.5 million cycleway included reclaiming land along Riverside Drive. Much of the material - mud, vegetation, and tree trunks - being removed from the foreshore would be taken to the bulk site over the road from Kissing Point, so trucks would also cause some congestion.

Meanwhile, commuters coming down Kamo Rd in the morning were beginning to feel the delays brought by work to improve the intersection at Kamo Rd and Kensington and Nixon streets, and complete the four-laning of Nixon St.