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Project partners Manukorihi Hapū, Otaraua Hapū, Pukerangiora Hapū, Puketapu Hapū, and NPDC have designed a 9.7km shared pathway extension to the Coastal Walkway, from Otupaiia/Marine Park in Waitara to Mangati/Bell Block. This will make the entire coastal path almost 23km long.
NPDC completed the most recent section of the Coastal Walkway, from Ellesmere Avenue to Bell Block Beach, in 2014. In 2017, a survey showed 86% public support for extending the shared pathway to Waitara.
When the extension is completed in 2027, we’ll have a safe and attractive 22.9km off-road shared path from Waitara to Ngāmotu. The wellbeing of our communities will be greatly enhanced as the path will encourage a healthy and active lifestyle.
The path will be a great experience for walkers, runners and bike-riders while treating this area with care and respect. The project is an opportunity to educate path users on the significant cultural, traditional, historical and spiritual landscape the shared pathway passes through.
Numerous rest areas and viewpoints will feature along the path, with users encouraged to stop, rest and appreciate the views of the ocean, the coastline and the reefs.
The pathway will be built in stages, with sections within each stage opened as they are completed.
Tangata whenua and NPDC have worked in partnership to develop the pathway’s design.
Construction will take place over four years, starting later in 2023 and finishing in 2027.
The pathway will include a variety of features that will make the journey a unique experience.
Before and after: the area between Waitara Beach and the holiday park now, and an artist’s impression of the same area after the path is built. The pathway will be nestled within the landscape and coastal restoration planting.
The Coastal Walkway is undoubtedly one of the most popular features of our district, for both residents and visitors alike. Not only will we be delivering more of what people love, but we’ll also have a safe off-road route for leisure activities and commuting between New Plymouth to Waitara. People will have access to landscapes they haven’t been able to reach before, and we’ll be connecting communities as well as making deeper connections with our histories.
All three stages will be 9.7km combined, which will take the full length (from Waitara’s Otupaiia/Marine Park to Ngamotu Beach) of the walkway to 22.9km.
Going coastal for the entire length was too difficult for a variety of reasons, not the least of which is the number of urupa and historical sites along the coast that need to be treated respectfully. There are also issues around coastal erosion, nesting birds and airport security. We have plans to make the route a stunning experience for all users, including a coastal stretch at Bell Block and Waitara.
We aim to begin later this year and to have the entire pathway completed by the end of 2027. Construction of stages two and three depends on confirmation of land purchases and some additional funding.
We plan to start at Otupaiia/Marine Park and work our way westward. Stage one runs from the Tuna Boardwalk in Waitara to the intersection of Brown and Tate roads.
The pathway has been designed in partnership with representatives of Manukorihi, Otaraua, Pukerangiora and Puketapu Hapū, with the support of Te Kotahitanga o Te Atiawa Trust. The look-and-feel was developed with specific stories in mind, which are represented in the design and including some highlight areas.
We undertook an intensive design refinement process to reduce the cost of the project. We looked at the type of path materials, the width of path, the size of rest areas, the amount of earthworks, lighting and bridge design, and using revegetation instead of specimen planting.
The total estimated cost is $39.4m including $18m from Waka Kotahi NZ Transport Agency.
The shared pathway will encourage more people out of cars and onto active transport between Waitara and New Plymouth. In addition, the design includes 96,000 new plants, the regeneration of wetlands and the creation of reserves.
There are many:
We are still working through this. However, it is likely the pathway will have additional reserves, viewing points, rest areas, seating, cycle parking and toilets. We are also working with hapū to enhance the area around the pathway for a broader experience including access to new public spaces.
No, it won’t. The existing bridge was installed to carry the wastewater pipe from Waitara to New Plymouth and a footpath was added on top. However, it’s in an area with historical significance that needs protection, so we’re righting a wrong by working with our hapū partners to identify a better route across the stream.
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Page last updated: 12:19PM Tue 16 May 2023