The bridge is part of the 6.6 kilometre He Ara Kotahi shared pathway project from the City to Massey University and the Military Camp at Linton.
He Ara Kotahi Steering Group Chair Ray Swadel says three options for the site were originally considered by the project team between the Palmerston North Holiday Park on Dittmer Drive and Maxwells Line.
Option 1 was near Botanical Road, the second was near Pitama Road and the third option was upstream near Maxwell’s Line.
The consultants looked at the design aspects of each option, the interests of stakeholders and the community, and did a cost comparison.
“We’ve also listened to the feedback of residents along Dittmer Drive, along with suggestions from the wider community and we’ve narrowed down where we believe the bridge should be. We think the bridge should be located in a zone that includes our original Option 1 (Botanical) near Katene Street on Dittmer Drive and a new location, approximately 400 metres away near Ruha Street,“ says Mr Swadel.
“More people are likely to use a bridge in this area. It is close to existing parking near the Holiday Park and attractions like the Esplanade are also nearby. We think we can build a bridge here within the available budget.”
The two other original options (Pitama and Maxwells Line) were rejected because they were not as strongly supported by the community and were more expensive to build.
The He Ara Kotahi Project Steering Group is preparing a report for the Council’s Finance and Performance Committee on May 16.
Letters have been sent out to residents of Dittmer Drive informing them of developments.
“This is definitely not the end of the bridge location process. A detailed business case will need be prepared to choose the final bridge location. This work will be completed in June and July,” says Mr Swadel.
A final recommendation will be made to the Council’s Planning and Policy Committee on August 1st.
He Ara Kotahi or “a pathway that brings people together” is a partnership between, Horizons Regional Council, Massey University, the New Zealand Army at Linton Military Camp, the New Zealand Transport Agency, Palmerston North City Council and Rangitāne. The $10m project is part of the Government’s $333m Urban Cycleways Programme.