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Mt Victoria track network gets a spruce-up

18 December 2008
Mt Victoria track network gets a spruce-up
Wellingtonians know there’s no better place to get a breathtaking view over the city than from the summit of Mt Victoria. Popular with locals and tourists alike, the Mt Victoria lookout was recently refurbished – and now the tracks around the summit have been given a thorough sprucing up too.
The Mt Victoria track network links the summit to the central city, Hataitai, Newtown and Oriental Bay. A great deal of upgrading and maintenance work has been carried out on the network over recent months, particularly on the Hataitai to City Walkway, which has been improved along its entire length.
The Council’s Environment Portfolio Leader, Councillor Celia Wade-Brown, says the improvements will make for a safer and more pleasant experience for people exploring the track network.
“The Mt Victoria tracks are used regularly by a wide range of people – from commuters and residents seeking a shortcut to people out for a walk, run or bike ride. The Town Belt brings nature close to the doorstep of many Wellingtonians and it’s important we keep it in good shape,” she says.
“Initially we concentrated on improving the walking surface and stormwater run-off, which will reduce the long-term cost of maintaining the tracks. We’ve also removed a number of unnecessary steps and many of the steps that remain have been upgraded or replaced with steps that are easier to use.”
Cr Wade-Brown says the Council has also been working to improve the area for mountain bikers. A new section of track around the city side of Mt Alfred has been installed with the assistance of the Wild Wellington mountain bike event organisers and next year a new mountain bike skills area will be developed. Two circular mountain bike routes – one easy and one intermediate – will also be highlighted with track markers and on mapboards.
“Existing map boards are being updated and a number of new interpretation and direction signs have been installed to help guide people unfamiliar with the area. We hope these will be particularly useful for people who are new to the city. We’re also keen to encourage more people to use the track network for their daily commute – it only takes 40 minutes to walk from Hataitai to Civic Square and it’s a really healthy alternative to taking the car.”
Improvement work will continue next year on parts of the Southern Walkway and the Newtown to Hataitai tracks. Some existing tracks will be named and a number of additional interpretation signs will be installed – including one at the site of the old Te Akatarewa Pā on Mt Alfred about the Māori and early settler history of the area. Work is due to start this month on the area adjacent to the new toilet below the Mt Victoria lookout to ensure it no longer gets muddy after heavy rainfall.

© Scoop Media

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