Speed limit changes have been approved for all 56 local roads proposed as part of the 2021 Speed Limit Review.
Rotorua district councillors agreed to the changes at this week's full Rotorua Lakes Council meeting.
The 56 locations are made up of roads that were not previously gazetted with official speed limits, access roads within recreation areas, rural roads and a small number of urban roads.
There were 184 written submissions from members of the community and for the most part, submitters supported lowering of speed limits.
Following consultation, council amended a number of speed reductions to align with feedback received from the community.
Those changes included:
• Reducing speed limits for some reserve access roads from the suggested 30km to 20km.
• Reducing speed limits for some rural roads in Awahou, Rotoiti, Rotoehu, Tikitere and Mourea to 40km down from the suggested 50km.
• Reducing Cookson Rd and Hawthornden Drive a further 20km down to 60km.
• A change for the Eastside community will be the reduction of the speed limit on Tarawera Rd to 50km, including the Redwood Park subdivision.
And a significant change for rural communities will be the reduction of speed limits and the installation of electronic variable signs outside Rerewhakaaitu, Broadlands and Waikite Valley schools.
Variable speed signs may operate for a maximum period of:
• 35 minutes before the start of school until the start of school.
• 20 minutes at the end of school commencing no earlier than five minutes before the end of school.
• 10 minutes at any other time of day when children cross the road or enter or leave vehicles at the roadside.
The speed limit outside Kaharoa School and Whirinaki Valley School will be reduced to 60km and the council will engage further with those communities during the next speed review, which is likely to take place later this year.
With the changes approved, the council's next steps will be to organise new speed limit signs and install them in the 56 locations. The council will keep the community updated as to when those changes will take place so motorists don't get caught out.
View all 56 speed limit changes here (page 31)
State Highway speed changes
During the Speed Review, the council partnered with Waka Kotahi NZ Transport Agency to gain feedback from the community about speed limit changes in the urban areas of State Highway 5 and State Highway 30.
That feedback closed on April 21, 2021. Waka Kotahi is now carefully considering all the information they have received alongside their own safety assessments. Waka Kotahi expects to provide more information to the community on this in the coming months.