Hamilton Ring Road FAQs

​​​​What is happening in the final section of the Hamilton Ring Road project?

This final section, subject to Council approval, involves constructing approximately 400m of Wairere Drive to Cobham Drive, which is the last link needed to complete the Hamilton Ring Road network. ​

Heading south from Cambridge Rd, Wairere Dr will be four lanes (two in each direction), and Cobham Dr will be raised on an embankment to allow Wairere Dr to pass underneath (see plan). This means pedestrian and cycle access on the shared paths of Wairere Dr will be on the same level, and removes the need for a separate pedestrian overbridge across Cobham Dr. The works are broadly planned to be completed in two stages and are funded in partnership with the NZ Transport Agency.

This will provide good connectivity between Wairere Drive and Cobham Drive, and also allow the future access needed to enable significant development in the Peacocke area via a future new bridge across the Waikato River.

What is the aim of the Ring Road project?

The Hamilton Ring Road major arterial transport network is a key component of the Access Hamilton strategy. The extension of Wairere Drive from Crosby Road through to Cobham Drive has been underway since 2011, with over five kilometres now completed along the Eastern side of the city. Once complete it will provide a major arterial corridor designed to take significant traffic flows and enable more people moving around Hamilton and in the future, whether in cars, walking, or on their bikes.

What are the expected benefits of the project?

The key objective of the Hamilton Ring Road is to encourage the right traffic to use the right roads. We have already seen significant shift of traffic from congested local streets onto previously completed sections of Wairere Drive. The Hamilton Ring Road has already delivered time savings, increased safety, and improved public transport, and walking and cycling facilities.​

Enabling works February - August 2018

Now that Council is building the traffic overbridge instead of the roundabout, is any more land required? 

The footprint is larger, however all the land we need is already owned by the Council. 

Dey St service lane work was finished last year. Does this need changing? 

No, Dey St and property driveways should stay the same. The white wooden sight rail is only temporary and will be replaced with a noise fence toward the end of the project, but that’s about it. 

Will any large trees be removed? 

Yes, there are unfortunately some nice old and large trees within the project footprint that must be removed. We will be working closely to leave as many as we can because we like them too! We’re also planning a major planting and landscaping project designed by ecological experts. 

Will these works affect traffic? 

The first stage is away from existing roads, but once the main construction begins next summer, there will be traffic management in place, particularly on Cobham Dr. This is a little way off yet and we plan on giving plenty of notice and communicating our plans and what to expect before we start. 

How will traffic on Cambridge Rd be affected during construction? 

Existing roads, especially Cambridge Rd, will continue to cater for traffic for longer than originally planned. Our traffic counts show current levels are manageable, but the city is still growing fast. We are monitoring this throughout the city and we’ve planned some safety improvement work on Cambridge Rd. Once Wairere Dr is connected to Cobham Dr, and other smaller projects are underway/completed, we anticipate that traffic volumes, especially trucks, will reduce. This is because they will have an alternative route in place via Wairere Dr and Cobham Dr. 

How has community feedback been captured and used in developing this project? 

​​The community has been involved with the Ring Road journey since the designation was notified in 2005, when extensive consultation was carried out with the public and numerous other key stakeholders. Many key details included in the project came from that consultation, including the shared walking and cycling path, pedestrian crossing facilities, and the input into the landscaping and urban design aspects. More recently, the community was involved in the designation for the Southern Links transport network which overlaps with the Ring Road designation in this location and includes provision for building the new overbridge. Ongoing information days and project updates have kept the community and the wider city informed of progress and given the opportunity for feedback on important aspects. We plan to continue these updates and information days throughout the work to make sure you know about any changes or developments with the project and ensure the community has ample chance to see and understand what these might mean.​

What pedestrian and cycling facilities are being provided as part of the final section of Wairere Drive?

A new 3 metre wide share path has been constructed along the whole Wairere Drive thus far, and this will be continued through this section also.

Pedestrian and cycling facilities included within the traffic overbridge, and specifically at this location are an appropriate extension of the very popular network already delivered through previous sections of Wairere Drive. The change to a traffic overbridge means that a separate pedestrian only bridge across Cobham Drive is now not required.

Plans we have available are only indicative at this stage, but show the general arrangement and intent with respect to connectivity.

Grade and specifications intend to allow all modes access.

When will the rest of Southern Links project be built?

Southern Links is the transport network connecting to and extending through the Peacocke growth area. The whole Southern Links network will be required when growth pressures are sufficient to require the release of that land for development.

Given the rapid growth within Hamilton and the sub-region, components of the Southern Link transport network may be developed earlier than previously anticipated. Just how much earlier is not clear yet.

It is because of this rapid growth and potential for Southern Links beginning early that Council is now constructing thi final section of the Ring Road with Cobham Drive. This will make it easier to respond to growth because we know a connection and a new bridge across the Waikato River in this location is likely to be the first step.

What other works are being done in the area?

The Hamilton Section of the Waikato Expressway has now been awarded with enabling works underway.

NZTA will upgrade the intersection of Cambridge Road and Cobham Drive once the intersection of Wairere Drive and Cobham Drive (this project) is finished. The intersection is currently proposed to be changed from a roundabout to a signalised “tee” intersection which is designed to better cater for the traffic flows and to compliment the recently upgraded intersection by Burger King. Traffic signals may also help further discourage rat running on Cambridge Road

HCC are planning to make some improvements along Cambridge Road between Cobham Drive and Wairere Drive. This will be planned to happen after the current works, and will aim to reinforce the road hierarchy in the area through various traffic calming and accessibility works. Separate consultation will take place for what these works will look like at a later stage.

How will footpath connectivity be affected during the works?

The new shared path already open along Wairere Drive won’t be impacted and will remain open.

The informal gravel path running from Hungerford Cres up to Howell Ave will likely be rerouted and we would also like to make some improvements to it. We are building a new path that connects to it, so it would be nice to make it a bit better where we can as well. This will likely involve easing the grade of some of the steep bits and sealing it.

Signage will be used to inform pedestrians where to expect anything out of the ordinary.

Where can I find out the latest information?

Contact the City Development Unit at Hamilton City Council on (07) 838 6699 or email city.development@hcc.govt.nz​.

Enabling Works Contractor
Nathan Thomas
Project Manager
021 856 187

Page reviewed: 02 Feb 2018 3:02pm