11 Mar 2020

Public road to Milford Sound to open next week

12:38 pm on 11 March 2020

The road to Milford Sound will be reopened to the public from Monday next week - but only at night.

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Milford Sound road repairs. Photo: NZTA

The only access road to the popular destination was badly damaged by heavy rain in early February.

Tourist bus convoys were allowed back in from February 21.

Transport Agency journey manager Peter Brown said crews had repaired the road faster than originally anticipated in some places.

"The convoys are primarily designed to assist with the repair operation of the road and to ensure local businesses remain viable," Brown said.

"In an effort to increase access and provide a way in for hunters, fishers, trampers and others who need to take their own vehicles and boats into the Sound, a new system of open times will start next week."

The road will be opened to the public after 5pm until shortly before 7.30am.

The new access trial will include daily tourist bus convoys operating hourly between 8.30am and 4pm. The last convoy into Milford Sound is at 3.30pm.

The convoy distance has been reduced to a 6km stretch.

The rest of the highway will be open 24/7 to the public, although it will depend on the weather, roadwork events or avalanche hazards closing the road.

The Transport Agency said it could be many months before the road is fully repaired.

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