A green light for Wellington and Wairarapa in $220m funding was announced today.
Hon Julie Anne Genter has announced funding for a nationwide cycleways package that includes support for the five Towns Trail. This is is a significant project that will eventually connect Martinborough, Featherston, Greytown, Carterton and Masterton to the Remutaka Cycle Trail and other Wellington Regional Trails.
The first priority is the Tauherenikau Bridge section – 11.5km of picturesque trail with a 150m long, 17m high suspension bridge over the Tauherenikau River. When complete, the Tauherenikau Bridge will be one of the longest suspension bridges in New Zealand.
“This cycle trail will help attract more visitors over to the Wairarapa and will provide locals a fun way to get out and explore their own back yard,” Julie Anne Genter said.
The other project is in the Eastern Bays of Wellington. “The Eastern Bays Shared Path and Five Towns Trail will provide safe protected walking and cycling routes, meaning more riders will have the freedom to bike around Wairarapa, Hutt City, and into Wellington on their own steam”. The Eastern Bays Shared Path will provide a safe walk and cycleway along Marine Drive, and will connect the Bays to the Remutaka Cycle Trail and Te Aranui o Pōneke – the Great Harbour Way.
These two cycleways are part of a $220 million shovel-ready cycleways package, which is likely to create more than 1,000 jobs in sustainable transport infrastructure.
Funding of $16 million for both projects has been provided from the Government’s $50 billion COVID Response and Recovery Fund set out in Budget 2020, which earmarked $3 billion for infrastructure projects.
The Greytown Trails Trust stalwarts who have guided the development of this project, Shane Atkinson, Bruce Cole and Bob Tosswill have indicated that as soon as resource consent approval is gained, construction will get under way, with the trail up and functioning towards the end of next year.
The Featherston-Greytown trail will have a different focus than the Greytown Rail Trail, complementing the colonial history through the involvement of iwi members from both areas, and reflecting aspects of Te Ao Maori.
The hardworking group who have developed and tirelessly maintained the existing section of rail-trail, grubbing weeds, spreading lime and selling sausages whilst planning for the expansion of a network of trails throughout the entire valley, will be delighted to see this development.
We have a public meeting planned for 7:30pm meeting start on Wednesday 23rd September 2020 at the Greytown Town Hall, at which we will have more information about these developments. All welcome.
Chair, Greytown Trails Trust