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Art Bridge Goes To Council

An "art bridge" to mark the millennium and Canterbury's 150th anniversary is to go before the Christchurch City Council for a go-ahead decision.

It will consider whether or not to place the $285,000 bridge across the River Avon from North Hagley Park to Park Terrace, near Dorset Street. The council will also consider whether to spend $77,000 on road safety works in Park Terrace.

A special joint meeting of the City Services and Parks and Recreation committees was held yesterday to debate the placing of the bridge.

It was decided to recommend to the full Council, which will meet on March 23, that the Council reaffirm that the bridge be placed at the Park Terrace-Dorset Street site. Also the committees recommended that the resource consent process proceed; that Turning Point 2000 tries to find money for the safety works, which will be underwritten by the Council; and that the Council be given an evaluation of optional sites for the bridge.

The concept of a bridge was first before the Council in March 1998. The Council's Parks Unit chose the Dorset Street site to aid people attending concerts in North Hagley Park.

Sculptor Andrew Drummond won a competition for the bridge, which is in the form of a cylindrical steel structure sheathed in brass, with a balustrade of extruded perforated brass mesh.

Last year the City Streets Unit told Councillors that $77,000 would be needed for the provision of a "pedestrian refuge and safety works necessary to accommodate the bridge." The City Services Committee then recommended that no funds be set aside for safety works and that the bridge be placed close to the Carlton Mill Bridge.



A resource application for the bridge at Dorset Street drew 40 submissions, with 27 in support. A resource consent hearing, before a commissioner, is scheduled for April 10-11.

A report before yesterday's meeting said a footbridge at Dorset Street would be an asset for special events in the park but the City Streets Unit said it be better, from traffic safety point of view, close to Kilmore Street or the Carlton Mill bridge.

However, the unit accepted that as a work of art the bridge would be better placed at Dorset Street.

The unit said the Dorset Street site would need safe crossing facilities for pedestrians and cyclists at Dorset Street.

ends

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