The inland road to Kaikoura will open to the public for unrestricted use next week.

The NZ Transport Agency plans to reopen the route 70 road from Monday morning, barring any major aftershocks or weather events.

Transport Minister Simon Bridges said the road had been cleared of more than 50 slips that came down in the earthquake.

There would be speed restrictions on the road.


"Crews are continuing to work urgently to clear slips and stabilise slopes on State Highway 1 south of Kaikoura. Work has also been underway on SH1 north of Kaikoura to allow access for residents and to prepare for the huge job of clearing several massive slips blocking the road," Bridges said.

"Restoring reliable access to Kaikoura from the south will come as a huge relief to residents and businesses in the region, and importantly it will allow visitors to come to town and enjoy the local hospitality during the holidays."

Earlier this week Bridges confirmed that Cabinet had agreed that SH1 and the rail corridor along the coastal route to the north and south of Kaikoura would be rebuilt in about 12 months. That will likely cost between $1.4 billion and $2 billion.