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Project links Palmerston North city with uni

Project launched to link Palmerston North city and Massey University by state-of-the-art gondola transport

An innovative proposal known as Palmylink has been launched this week to connect Palmerston North City with the Massey University campus with a public transport system using state-of-the art aerial ropeway technology.

The electricity-powered gondola transport system could deliver people between the city and campus in as little time as 9 minutes. Gondolas will arrive every 30 seconds, practically eliminating waiting time, and will result in major relief of congestion on Palmerston North’s Fitzherbert Road. As initially proposed Palmylink would consist of up to four stations that could link with a modified urban bus network and could move up to 1500 people an hour in both directions.

The Palmylink proposal was presented this week to a workshop at the Palmerston North Convention Centre convened by Palmerston North City Councillor Michael Feyen. The workshop was attended by councilors and officers of Palmerston North City Council and Horizons Regional Council, as well as representatives from Massey University, Vision Manawatu and Chamber of Commerce. The concept, which was positively received, was readily identified as a potential future growth driver and distinct 'point of difference' for Palmerston North.

The Palmylink proposal has been the subject of several years of private sector research and development by Ryan O’Connor. The proposal is being supported by a team of leading experts in land development, transportation technology, urban design, sustainability and town planning including Landlink, Beca, Common Ground and Toronto-based Creative Urban Projects.

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Urban designer James Lunday, of Common Ground, noted that the proposed project would immediately add weight to Palmerston North’s Sustainable City Strategy and reinforce its existing points of difference as a true Student City. “Systems like this provide a superb opportunity and efficient means of fostering change in the way that we live, work, and travel within our cityspaces,” said James.

Expressions of support for Palmylink are now being sought prior to the feasibility study stage. Project promoters Ryan O'Connor and Murali "MG" Gopalan have said that the project, which would cost up to $50 million to construct, will be an infrastructure investor led project. A partnership model which includes key stakeholders will work collaboratively to make the project “investment ready” and attractive to potential investors.

• For more details about the project including a visualisation see: www.palmylink.org.nz

ENDS


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