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Green light for a cycleway

Masterton District Council [MDC] has approved the construction of the Eastside Link cycleway, which will start at the Kuripuni shops and finish at the netball courts on Colombo Rd.

The full route will run from the Kuripuni shops, down Kuripuni St past the back entrance of Chanel College, along Mākoura Rd past Mākoura College, then up Johnstone St, and onto Colombo Rd to the netball courts. It will feature a combination of on-road bi-directional and single-lane cycle lanes and shared space on footpaths.

The cycleway will provide a safer cycling route for students at Chanel College, Mākoura College, Puawānanga Wairarapa Young Parents Centre, Te Kura Kaupapa Māori o Wairarapa, Ko Te Aroha early childhood centre, and Lakeview School.

Waka Kotahi will fully fund the design and construction of the $1.1m project through its Transport Choices programme. MDC eventually decided on the Kuripuni St and Mākoura Rd route after several submitters were critical of its previously preferred route, which went down Herbert St then onto Colombo Rd, during consultation.

The council received 187 written submissions on the project during consultation in May and June, 65 per cent of which did not support the Herbert St route.

There was an even split for and against the project, with 24 per cent of submitters saying a cycleway was unnecessary and another 24 per cent saying it would be a community asset.

Businesses suffering from a loss of parking spaces was also a concern raised by 21 per cent of submitters.

The cycleway route in green. IMAGE/SUPPLIED

Counsellor Tim Nelson, who is also principal of Lakeview School, said the cycleway resulted from genuine consultation and community engagement.

“We had some excellent feedback from the community on the best route for the cycleway, and the final design reflects that,” Nelson said.

“The Eastside Link will be a wonderful asset for the community, and I believe it is just the beginning of work to make cycling more accessible in Masterton.”

Waka Kotahi urban mobility manager Kathryn King said the Transport Choices programme was set up so local councils can fast-track projects that support active, low-emission transport.

“These projects are a step towards a future where it is easier, safer, and more affordable to travel, work, and play on our streets,” King said.

“We congratulate Masterton District Councillors for the leadership they have shown finalising plans for the Eastside Link.”

Contractors will start building the cycleway in early 2024 after detailed design work and a tendering process are complete.

Flynn Nicholls
Flynn Nicholls
Flynn Nicholls is a reporter at the Wairarapa Times-Age who regularly writes about education. He is originally from Wellington and is interested in environmental issues and public transport.

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