Speed reduction for road near Lake Ohau

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The Waitaki District Council is looking at making some changes to the speed limit at Lake Ohau during daylight saving season.

The current speed limit is 100km/h and people are the council are looking at reducing this to 70km/h over an 1100m of stretch adjacent to the Lake Middleton campsite.

In doing this the council will install a safe, appropriate and legally enforceable holiday speed limit on Lake Ohau Rd.

Additional signage would need to be installed such as warning signs and a revised holiday speed limit of 70km/h on Lake Ohau Rd, to maximise safety over the summer months.

While the idea for this is to only happen over the daylight saving months, at the next district-wide speed limit review they will consider reducing the speed limit to 70km/h for good.

Back in 2002 a holiday speed limit was installed on the same stretch of road except at 50km/h, however there is no recollection of how the speed limit was calculated and with HSL not registered in the Waitaki District Council Roading Bylaw 2005 or 2013 so it’s unclear whether the signs are legal.

A report was sent to the council on November 3, 2014 stating that the speed limit should be 70km/h, but this included extending it 8km from the Alps 2 Ocean trail all the way to Lake Ohau Lodge.

The costs for the share the road signage and ongoing maintenance costs is about $2000.

Concerns of the speed by some people down the stretch of road has been brought up by the Lake Ohau Alpine and Village Residents and the Ratepayers Association Committee.

The preferred option is option one which includes the 70km/h speed limit during daylight saving, but only on the sections of road calculated. The 70km/h is calculated on the fact that there will be more Alps 2 Ocean riders, pedestrians and parking activity over the summer.

If agreed on the holiday speed would come into effect from the last weekend in September to the first weekend in April.

By BRAYDEN LINDSAY