Western Gate safety improvements commence

Napier Port’s Western Gate brings together a number of road users, pedestrians and cyclists.

Despite years of trying to minimise the risks around vehicles and people mixing in a small area, Western Gate is getting busier and more dangerous. Over the last year, we’ve had several collisions between trucks and trains and numerous near misses.

We’ve also had issues with truck trailers over-hanging the rail line when exiting; members of the public driving into or across truck lanes and exiting via the entry; beach users parking in driveways impeding traffic; cyclists biking around the marked lanes in front of trucks; and children running from cars parked by the beach.

Napier Port has been working on a solution with KiwiRail and NZTA, including barrier arms and traffic lights. Underground works are starting this weekend, with the lights and barrier arms being commissioned in late January/early February.

Safety improvements include:

  • Traffic lights being installed on Breakwater Road to control traffic entering and exiting Western Gate;
  • Barrier arms being installed to stop vehicles crossing in front of trains, linked to the traffic lights and sensors to aid traffic flow;
  • Pedestrian crossings and pedestrian islands across Western Gate will be signaled with a push button, linked to the traffic lights and train controls; and
  • The pedestrian crossing over the rail line to the beach will have an audible warning device, linked to the train controls.

We are also investigating future safety measures, such realigning the Main Office driveway which would see the three car parks on the inside of the gate removed.

We ask drivers to take extreme care when approaching or exiting the gate over the next month.

We’ll keep you posted as the project progresses. If you have any questions about the physical works  please refer to Infrastructure Maintenance Manager, Clarke Curtis at clarkec@napierport.co.nz.