A bridge of significance
At yesterday's Future Tairawhiti meeting, councillors approved the concept for the slipway footbridge across the Turanganui River for engagement with the community.
The Turanganui Bridge will provide access to the closest site we now have to the sacred Te Toka a Taiau/ao where the port’s slipway is in the middle of the harbour.
Programme manager De-Arne Sutherland says the bridge project, that forms part of the Tairawhiti Navigations programme, is about recognising the significance of this site to iwi as well as the being the place where Maori and European first met in 1769.
"We'll be asking our community what they think about the idea to include it in the programme for Navigations."
Estimated construction costs for the bridge are around $6m, with $1.15m provided from Eastland Community Trust to get through to the design and resource consents stage.
These costs are well over the existing budget and it's looking less likely to be ready for Te Hā 2019.
Although not having a Turanganui Bridge completed for 2019 is disappointing, the Navigations governance group, ECT and Activate Tairāwhiti have confirmed that they support a high quality and well-designed and supported bridge being constructed post 2019, rather than rushing this process and not meeting full project benefits.
Read more about Tairawhiti Navigations programme
Future Tairawhiti agenda with staff report and concept plans