The group that will build the Puhoi to Warkworth motorway is already expecting to finish the project ahead of schedule, announcing plans to open before Christmas in 2021.
The Northern Express Group, which is calling itself NX2, will build the motorway and operate it for the next 25 years.
The consortium is holding an information evening at the Puhoi Sports Club on Thursday December 15 from 5pm to 8pm. Members of the construction and design team will attend the meeting to answer questions from the public.
NX2 chief executive Ray Wilson met with Puhoi residents on November 30 and set out a timeline for the project and answered questions from the community.
He said preliminary work on the motorway was underway, but major earthworks wouldn’t begin until September next year and would continue over three earthworks seasons. All of the structures would be completed by October 2021 and the motorway would open soon after.
About 450 to 500 people will be working on the project, including a design team of about 130.
Mr Wilson said there would be a lot of communication with the community throughout the construction.
“You will be pissed off with us from time to time, but we will do our best,” Mr Lambert said.
He said the public-private partnership arrangement would result in a better service for road users.
“Having the private sector run it will be a huge advantage. They will have a team sitting at a base near Warkworth and must respond to any incident within 20 minutes.”
Details on how construction traffic would impact local roads were not yet available. Mr Wilson said a comprehensive traffic management plan would be developed and would have to meet traffic restrictions set out in the project’s resource consent.
NX2 consists of eight companies. Fletcher Construction Company and Spanish company Acciona Infrastructure will build the motorway, while planning will be done by Becca and Tonkin and Taylor.
The project will be funded by Accident Compensation Corporate, HRL Morrison & Co. Public Infrastructure Partners and Fletcher Building.
NX2 would have a main office at 40 Wyllie Road, which was expected to open in April/May, and a smaller office in Puhoi.
The consortium recently gained approval from the Overseas Investment Office to acquire leasehold interest in 1700ha of land for the motorway.