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New Walkway Bridges opened 12/9/2013

New Walkway Bridges opened  12/9/2013

Below is a report from the Taranaki Daily news 20 August 2012
New Plymouth's most popular inland walkway is finally to get a $500,000 makeover to open it up to people unable to negotiate steps. The Te Henui Walkway is to have two new pedestrian bridges built across the river this summer as part of the New Plymouth District Council's Let's Go project.The bridges will bypass the hillside beside Spencer Pl, near the historic Pukewharangi Pa.
"The stairs will remain as an alternative route, but the two bridges will mean people can travel the length of the Te Henui Walkway without encountering steps," Let's Go project manager Carl Whittleston said. The narrow and hilly section is impossible for anyone in wheelchairs and difficult going for anyone with a pushchair, pram or bicycle. Work will start in November and should be finished by February.
The project will be funded by the Government (61 per cent) and the New Plymouth District Council through the $3.7 million national walking and cycling money won by the council in 2010.The bypass route was a long time coming after first being mooted four years ago, Mr Whittleston said. Planning had involved talks between the Historic Places Trust, the hapu Ngati Tuparikino, Ngati Tawhirikura and Ngati Te Whiti, the Department of Conservation and other interested parties.
Friends of Te Henui co-ordinator Valda Poletti - owner of the nearby Te Kainga Marire, a garden of national significance - was thrilled with the development. "These bridges will not only improve access for those who live on the mountain side of Pukewharangi Pa but they'll also preserve the bush remnant from Spencer Place, which would have been compromised if the existing path had instead been widened or had ramps installed to replace the steps."

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New Walkway Bridges opened  12/9/2013

On 12/9/2013 New Plymouth's twin Te Henui Walkway bridges were officially opened to the public by Mayor Harry Duynhoven who cut the ribbon. The bridges were blessed by Ngati Te Whiti kaumatua Rangikotuku Rukuwai.Mr Duynhoven said the bridges enhanced the walkway and cycleway network around the district and enabled those with mobility impairments to enjoy the area.

Bridge by Spencer Place. Click on all photos to enlarge


Looking across to western bridge.
 

Looking upstream.


Looking downstream


The Western bridge.
 









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