Council & City

Manawatū River network

Developing recreation activities along the Manawatū River is one of our major focus areas over the next 10 years. It will deliver lifestyle benefits for our residents, and contribute to our city’s attractiveness as a place to live or visit.

Photo shows sun setting over the bridge.

The new cycle and pedestrian bridge is part of He Ara Kotahi, a shared pathway linking the city with Linton Army Camp and Massey University.

A big part of the Manawatū River network catalyst project is the Victoria Esplanade. The Esplanade is Palmerston North’s premier park and it holds a special place in the hearts of many residents. More than 600,000 people visit it every year.

We're developing a masterplan to guide the Esplanade's development over the next 10 years. Our focus is on prioritising pedestrian-friendly links between the park and the river. 

Central Energy Trust Wildbase Recovery is a major new facility focused on rehabilitating endangered native birds. It is sited in the Esplanade, and is a collaboration between Massey University and Council in partnership with the Department of Conservation, Rangitāne o Manawatū, Lions and Rotary. Other funding was provided by the Eastern and Central Community Trust, Lotteries and corporate sponsors.

Council encourages people to do more walking, running and cycling for recreation and commuting. These are popular and healthy recreation activities in and around Palmerston North, and offer great ‘green’ modes of transport.

As part of this we are putting a lot of effort into creating shared pathways. Many of these are alongside the river. Others extend beyond the river, but are still part of this overall catalyst project.

The Manawatū River Network catalyst project also includes biodiversity improvements and upgrades to parks and recreation areas along the river. 

You can find more information about what we're doing along the Manawatū River by looking through our strategies and plans, in particular those listed here.