This morning we took a drive along it from Te Moana Road to Kapiti Road, did a 180 degrees to Peka Peka; and then back to Te Moana Road.
The good thing, of course, is that the Ewy (as per a sign on Kapiti Road) is open and those who want to can now bypass Waikanae town centre. The old SH1 is now a local road and traffic on it seems — from observation this morning — to have dropped by the 50% that officials were predicting.
The bad is that finishing touches to the periphery that will make it all visually appealing are not finished and they could take a few more weeks. There are still plenty of utes and earth-moving vehicles etc. around near the Te Moana Road interchange and elsewhere, so be careful.
The design feature that bothers us is that it is not possible to turn from the Expressway onto Peka Peka Road when going north — you need to use the old SHI. When going south it’s not a problem, however: you simply take what is now marked as a turnoff to Peka Peka and Waikanae along the old SH1, then turn west to cross over the bridge.
Arriving at Te Moana Road from the Expressway in either direction was a bit strange, but our feeling is that most of the time we will use the new road when heading north from Wellington. When going south from Otaki though, we’ll use the old SH1.