Roading Work & Projects

Roads, Transport & Parking

Forward Works Online Map

Multiple infrastructure projects are currently either planned or in progress in our District. The following map provides information on those identified.

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Types of Project Works

Road Resurfacing

Think about it like giving your house a new coat of paint, it protects the road structure from moisture, but it doesn’t fix faults (like rotten boards).

Prior to resurfacing, your street may undergo a number of different works to improve the faults and drainage.  These are done to ensure maximum value is achieved for the customer and the roading asset.

Road Reconstruction

This is like stripping off the weatherboards and replacing them, before painting the house.

This work is more extensive and can include building up the road or in a large scale, digging up and removal of material. Road reconstruction is only done when the cost of future repairs to the road is higher than reconstructing it.

Within two years of reconstruction, there will be a further resurfacing, to ensure the investment (road) is protected by adequate waterproofing.

Road Seal Widening

This is a widening or an extension of the width of the road.

There are a number of roads that are now too narrow for their current and expected traffic, but do not qualify for a full reconstruction, therefore extra width is tacked on to the side of the existing road.

Footpath Reconstruction

This involves the removal of the existing footpath surface and the base is prepared for a new surface.

Prior to a footpath reconstruction, Council may contact you about any non-complaint vehicle crossing to your property and offer to work with you to make your vehicle crossing comply to Council’s standards and specifications.

Kerb and Channel Reconstruction

This involves removing and replacing the existing kerb and channel.

As part of the works, changes to road widths, alignment and traffic calming measures (road safety) may be done in conjunction with this reconstruction.

Roadside Drainage

This is normally known as drainage works or surface water channel construction. The reasons for undertaking roadside drainage work are:

  • Roadside drainage is necessary to draw water away from the road. Water in a pavement is the leading cause of failure (e.g. large unsafe potholes).
  • Roadside drainage is an important component of pre-reseal repairs. If poor drainage is observed, then usually there are a number of early failures, not visible to the untrained eye. If these are left and drainage is not done, then potholes grow in size and scale to cause an unsafe surface.
  • If drainage is not completed then eventually a costly road rehabilitation will be required. This is not a good use of ratepayer or taxpayer money.
  • Works are generally undertaken shortly before resurfacing on the rural network. Timing is scheduled such that we undertake the drainage works before pavement repairs. Generally the repairs need some months to settle and then resurfacing will be undertaken to keep the road waterproof and maximise its life.

Creating the surface water channels is standard maintenance practise for rural roads and the specification for construction is covered under the Council’s general maintenance contract, which is an accepted and well used national practise.

To create a surface water channel on our rural network a digger will remove grass and vegetation while digging on a shallow angle to create the channel. During construction, the berm may be left with clumps of soil and vegetation, which will be smoothed out when construction is completed.

While construction occurs, it may create inconvenience to the landowners that choose to maintain Council owned grass berms, but the inconvenience is short lived and the financial and safety benefits far outweigh this issue.

Frequently Asked Questions

When will the work be completed?

If your street is being resurfaced or reconstructed you should be part of a letterbox-drop prior to work being undertaken, if you have any queries, phone the number on the letter. We endeavour to complete work as effectively and efficiently as possible, therefore if any work takes longer than expected, it is likely that there has been an unknown issue identified following works starting.

Weather has a significant impact on road surfacing and construction activities.

  • The cold weather affects the ability for the chip to stick to the bitumen ("tar")
  • The rain can result in the fresh bitumen running off the surface
  • Adverse hot weather affects the ability for the newly laid surface to cool down, and you may notice some "chip roll-over" where the chip gets black, this generally wears off with usual tyre wear

Will I be able to access (drive/walk/cycle) through the area?

There may be limited access to and from your driveway while works are being carried out. If you have any special requirements for access to and from your property the contractor can usually accommodate these, if known in advance. Please contact the number listed on your letterbox-drop letter.

Signs, speed restrictions, cones and / or traffic controllers will be used to guide and control road users while work occurs in the area. Please respect these as they are provided not only for the contractors’ safety, but for road users as well.

What hours will the work and machinery occur?

Work hours are generally limited from 7am to 7pm, but there may be instances, normally in high traffic volume areas, where Council would have approved for work to occur outside of these hours. Residents will be notified prior to this occurring.

My car was damaged because of the roadworks. What do I do?

The temporary speed restriction in place during and after works are also there to ensure vehicles are not damaged. Driving to the speed restriction is the best way to prevent vehicle damage.  If the damage was for other reasons, in the first instance make contact with your insurer.

Why is my street not on the list?

Council staff and engineers assess a number of risk and factors, and apply this across the whole Timaru District roading network. Council has limited funding to ensure rates are affordable and this requires us to prioritise. We also ensure we are using rate payers’ and tax payers’ dollars effectively and efficiently and aim to maximise the life of our roads.  Unfortunately as the end of a roads life it can get a bit rough.. The Timaru District currently has 955km of sealed roads and over 1,700km of roads in total!

At times road works will be delayed due to programme clashes. For example Domain Avenue, Temuka, has been left off the road reconstruction list for some years to allow the installation of water and sewer mains prior to reconstructing the road. These delays can be frustrating but digging up a newly constructed road is inefficient (expensive), affects the long term useful life of the road and is not a good use of rate payers funds.

Some roads may be recognised as near end of life and starting to show some failures, but there may be specific reasons why the particular road is not getting any work done.

To create a priority list, the whole roading network is assessed using factors like:

  • Previous maintenance costs,
  • Safety risks and
  • Vehicle use (type and frequency).

From the list, only a limited number roads each year are marked for certain work(s). This is limited by the budget available.

The contractor has fixed the road but now it has pot-holed again. Why?

In some cases temporary repairs will be made to the road to keep the road accessible. A more permanent work will be programmed to be undertaken in the future. In the first instance, higher risk sites (such as high vehicle use and high speeds) will be programmed, followed with other sites in a priority order.

Occasionally works undertaken by the contractor may have a quality issue and fail. While this is frustrating the Council has a clear audit process and Council work closely with the contractor to remedy the issue. This is called “rework” and is not paid for by Council.

The contractor has fixed the road but now there are loose chip (small stones) left. Why?

Often after a new resurfacing (chip sealing) you will notice loose chip in the area. In the first week of the resurfacing, some chip remains to protect the new seal surfaces from turning car tyres removing the new surface. The contractor will programme a sweeper truck to sweep the extra chip up near the end of the first week.

Early in winter as the ground temperature drops sometimes a new seal will lose chip as the bitumen hardens. This is normal and the contractor will do a further sweep of the area.

Last updated: 24 Feb 2021