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Good progress on Manawatu Gorge work: NZTA

NZ Newswire logoNZ Newswire 2/05/2017

The Manawatu Gorge road remains on target to reopen in a fortnight, with contractors reporting good progress on clearing the second of two slips.

The road, part of State Highway 3, has been closed since April 24 because of the slips.

The smaller one at the Ashhurst end of the gorge has been cleared.

NZTA highway manager Ross I'Anson says about 2000 of the 3500 cubic metres of material that fell at the Woodville end have been removed.

Once the rest is taken away, net fencing will be put up to stabilise the slip face.

"While the gorge is closed for slip removal contractors will be carrying out routine maintenance works to improve driver experience once the gorge is open," Mr I'Anson said.

"It's still expected that the gorge road will reopen by May 18."

The Pahiatua Track and Saddle Road are alternative routes and Mr I'Anson said motorists were reminded to be patient and drive to the conditions.

Mr I'Anson said there had been reports of dangerous driver behaviour on the Saddle Road, such as passing on blind curves.

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