High costs scupper cycleway bridge plans

An artist’s impression of the now-canned cycleway. Supplied photo.

Plans to construct an ‘iconic' cycleway bridge over the Wairoa River have been shelved in favour of a more pragmatic and affordable design.

The bridge was to be a key feature of the Omokoroa to Tauranga Cycleway, but is no longer feasible due to higher than expected costs.

Western Bay of Plenty District Council deputy chief executive Gary Allis says, based on the initial concept, it was estimated the bridge would cost around $6.5 million.

Updated estimates following geotechnical testing and engineering design have shown it is no longer the best option in terms of value for ratepayers.

“Our focus is on delivering an iconic cycle trail through some picturesque parts of the Bay of Plenty, which we hope will be a drawcard both for locals and commuters, and also as an attraction for tourists. We are committed to completing the project whilst also ensuring we deliver value for our rate payers.

“Since our initial concept plans, engineering surveys have shown the site wouldn't suit a bridge design like this and we've had to be honest about what we can achieve within the budget.”

The council says they will continue to work with partners on the project to find a solution that works for the site and is achievable within budget.

The trail is an Urban Cycleways Programme project, jointly funded by central government, the NZ Transport Agency, Western Bay of Plenty District Council and Tauranga City Council, with additional contributions from the NZ Community Trust, Tauranga Energy Consumer Trust and the Omokoroa Community Board.

The planned 19km route will be made up of both new and existing off-road shared paths and local road connections, providing a link between the growing township of Omokoroa and Tauranga City's existing urban cycleway network.


@ Tgaboy

Posted on 07-10-2017 11:44 | By MISS ADVENTURE

I believe he is referring to the fact that no cyclist pays a registration annualy, but then of course nothing of he money paid via registration is for roads. So although it is a point it is actually meaningless.


Posted on 03-10-2017 21:35 | By Tgaboy

You feel my response was abusive? Yet you're happy to label cyclists, of which I count myself, as "freeloaders"? Sure. Ok.


Posted on 30-09-2017 14:48 | By MISS ADVENTURE

Perhaps your thoughts are limited, mot likley! A simple thing for you to "move" your view of 'all cyclists have registered vehicles in the garage'. Without implying anything else, I suggest you pick any school, sit at the gate (on ya bike most likely) and see how many you can count coming out of the schoolh bell goes off. Depending on the school it will be dozens to hundreds. None of them have registered vehicles of any type, at least they shouldnt. Please confirm you understand, accept and your last comment is wrong.


Posted on 29-09-2017 21:28 | By groutby

....normally I wouldn't reply to direct (could say abusive I guess) comments such as yours, but am making exception in your case. Simple?..no, well not me anyway, I may remind you that cyclists ( I will assume yourself), have no more (or less) rights when on two wheels whether they own a car or not...the licensing and RUC are for the individual vehicle to which is stated, and NOT the fact that you may, or may not elect ride a bicycle on a public road. If you choose to, that I guess is admirable and good luck to you, but to assume (perhaps in your case) "automatic extra status" because you have a legally roadworthy vehicle at home while you choose to ride a bicycle is simply not correct. You may wish to confirm with the NZTA or NZ Road Code to confirm this, I recommend that you do..........

@ If only

Posted on 29-09-2017 16:00 | By MISS ADVENTURE

The point is that a la-dee-da costly bridge of $6m odd is completely over the top. Such a cost is unacceptable and excessively expensive to teh point of complete lunacy. But then of course those are in fact the essential criteria for TCC to do anything, wont look at it unless it is well over the line and some.


Posted on 28-09-2017 20:25 | By Tgaboy

"Freeloading cyclists"? Are you simple, or what? I can't think of any cyclist who doesn't own a car. Therefore, they are paying registration and road user charges and not using their cars as much as they could. If anything you and others benefit from one less car on the road to slow you down due to the fact the cyclists are cycling.


Posted on 28-09-2017 20:19 | By Tgaboy

Now spend the money saved making cycle paths along the main routes for students and commuter cyclists. The pay off will be less traffic and healthier population.

@ groutboy

Posted on 28-09-2017 10:16 | By If only

Maybe you should get out and do some biking and see what these trails do for the economics of many provincial centres !. The whole idea of this bridge was to link an 'off road' trail coming in from Omokoroa, it is not on the highway !. But yep, as predicted the nay sayers are out in force and Tauranga languishes as a city that doesn't really want to be a city ! The councils have responsibilities to provide services, infrastructure etc but they also need to be enhancing the area and city as a place to visit. This is just one of those things and as the article states is receiving funding from all sorts of organisations and a sht load of work by volunteers from our communities.

'But if only' ... we were not lied to in the first place

Posted on 28-09-2017 09:16 | By Murray.Guy

It was obvious to the 'village idiot' that the developers of this proposal, with the ignorant support of sycophant local Mayors and Councillors, were misleading (at best) or lying to the community and ratepayers. I have NO doubt most in our community applaud outdoor safe cycling initiatives as I do, but like most local body projects, we have those who seek to choose a pathway of bollocks, manipulation and excesses (new Museum, libraries, new admin building, I-Site, etc) which in turn results in the loss of community support. We have an existing bridge that WBOPDC Gary ALLIS said "could NOT accommodate clip ons", yet it can accommodate the massive growth in traffic flows and heavier truck loadings. Gary tells us he based his opinion on a 2005 study of the bridge for a 'concrete and steel' clip on - Yeh, right! No accountability for $thousands wasted, time lost!

Gary's dream Shattered

Posted on 28-09-2017 03:39 | By leighmac

What! you lot caring about ratepayers! Your sickness starting to cure, we all thought it was terminal.

@ If only

Posted on 27-09-2017 21:49 | By groutby

..............I seriously can't believe you wrote that, on this side, and that side of the bridge.."we" have no "traditional new age of trail biking" at all as I see it...what possible benefit would it bring?..it's a bleedin' bridge!....put one along the current one to keep it safe for freeloading cyclists and get over it!...job done!..QU: why do cyclists have to ride along a highway?...go "trail" riding in it's true sense and get actually AWAY from the roads...please...

@ sh2 commuter

Posted on 27-09-2017 18:06 | By MISS ADVENTURE

Wash your mouth out! reduce rates, never will happen, all teh mushroomers at City Hall would all turn over in the graves at such a thought. The whole of lives are dedicated to how to rip into ratepayers relentlessly every year with all new and better ways to create cost, spending for ever more needless ways.


Posted on 27-09-2017 16:49 | By GreertonBoy

Thank goodness we dont have to pay for that eye sore... what a monstrosity... I bet the person who designed (threw that together) was really proud of it too?..... Next! Surely someone can be paid alot more money to come up with something even more hideous?

Waste of money

Posted on 27-09-2017 16:03 | By sh2 commuter

$6.5 Mill for a luxury cycleway bridge - what a waste of money. The Tauranga Northern Link new bridge when built could take cyclists at no extra cost.The money would be far better spent on leaking schools, more teachers or nurses - or even heaven forbid lower rates!

@ mutley

Posted on 27-09-2017 15:40 | By MISS ADVENTURE

No mate, common sense should hve kicked in before the idea happened. But then a million later in "planning" and "thinking" means the bills are there and the stupids continue to be rewarded.


Posted on 27-09-2017 12:51 | By Merlin

Was far to much money from the start.A lot of footpaths need attention how about those?? or is there not enough ego in them.

Bolt on.

Posted on 27-09-2017 12:49 | By Hunterway

Just bolt one on the railway bridge .Noel

Bit of a shame...

Posted on 27-09-2017 12:37 | By If only

especially given the economic benefits the new age of 'trail biking' has been shown to bring to many provincial centres, it's a real shame this isn't going ahead. The usual 'anti anything that costs $$ brigade' will no doubt applaud the decision, but this city needs a good shot in the arm of modernisation and something more than just nice beaches and the odd event to draw people to the area on a regular basis. Hopefully the trail itself will be scenic enough to do so.

Thank goodness ...

Posted on 27-09-2017 12:36 | By mutley

common sense has prevailed. Now hopefully we can get on with a better cycleway and a more practical bridge option.

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