A prime vantage point overlooking construction of a new bridge upstream from the Horotiu Bridge is expected to become a must-see attraction on the Te Awa cycleway and walkway.
Te Awa - The Great New Zealand River Ride will snake past the site and a viewing area has been set up by the New Zealand Transport Agency to give the public an uninterrupted view of the new bridge. The 140-metre-long bridge is a key feature of the $250 million Ngaruawahia section of the Waikato expressway and will take traffic over the Waikato River about 400m upstream of the Horotiu Bridge.
The viewing area and car park is signposted off Horotiu Bridge Rd.
NZTA's Waikato expressway principal project manager Richard Young said the soon-to-be built walkway gave the public a unique chance to get a close-up view of the bridge and the southern end of the expressway section.
An information board at the viewing area will be updated regularly with information about the bridge and project.
Pier works are under way at the bridge site.
Mr Young said 630 tonnes of reinforcing steel, 700 tonnes of structural steel and 2250 cubic metres of concrete will be used in constructing the bridge.
Meanwhile, the shared river cycleway and walkway, once complete, will link the Ngaruawahia section of the 70km Te Awa track to Hamilton. From Meadow View Lane the trail will hug the Waikato River through to the Horotiu Bridge.
Te Awa River Ride project manager Jennifer Palmer said planning for the section was almost complete and construction was expected to start next month. The section is due to be completed early next year.
Ms Palmer said the section would contain numerous interesting features and stories, "including Fonterra, the Mangaharakeke Pa site and, of course, the construction of the new bridge".
"We're now looking at how best to tell these amazing stories through signage, interpretation panels, story boards, art etcetera. NZTA has already installed a viewing platform along what will soon be the Te Awa trail; we're hoping to find as many ways as possible to interact with our community like this."
- © Fairfax NZ News
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