Work Starts On Kaiwaka Footbridges
A small gathering, a prayer and a blessing to keep workers safe marked the start of the work on-site for the Kaiwaka footbridges.
Two footbridges are to be installed at Kaiwaka, with the support of PGF funding from Kānoa – Regional Economic Development & Investment Unit. The footbridges will run alongside the busy State Highway 1 and improve safety for those wanting to get across the river. They will improve connectivity around the township so people can walk safely between shops, parks and cafes.
The bridges were the brain-child of Lars Hakkenburg who first suggested the river crossings around 2015. Kaiwaka Can pursued his bridge-crossing idea and the community group is finally seeing a result from their planning.
In his speech, the Mayor payed tribute to Councillor Larsen for raising the need for safety improvements around Kaiwaka with Minister Jones. In turn, Councillor Larsen acknowledged the Council for turning around the funding applications.
The project has brought local employment opportunities. The Council has contracted Bridge It NZ, a specialist bridge-building company based in Mount Manganui, to build the bridges. They have sub-contracted local companies to carry out the landscape design and to construct the boardwork. There are still further employment opportunities for local labourers starting in late January. Those interested should contact Kim Bevins on 027 406 6234.
Workers have started the foundation work to support the northern bridge. Around 19 January they will start driving piles for the southern footbridge. For safety, the southern State Highway underpass will be closed for a few days, starting from 19 January while teams are working in the area. The worksite will be cleared and cordoned off in the evenings so the underpass can be reopened for people to use.
After the piles and abutments are built the bridges will be lowered into place with the help of a crane.
Work is expected to be completed, and the bridges open for use, by the end of March.