Work on the project, which includes a 4.4km Shared Path (cycleway/walkway) along Marine Drive, replacement seawalls and future upgrade opportunities could start as early as 2020.
Lower Hutt Mayor Ray Wallace is excited by the milestone and acknowledged the work done by the project team.
“A lot of hard work by the project team, officers and the community has gone into getting the project to this stage, so it’s fantastic to see it moving forward.
“The Eastern Bays Shared Path will benefit the whole of Lower Hutt. It will help businesses thrive through more tourism, provide a safer environment for active travel alongside more resilient infrastructure,” says Mayor Wallace
The Eastern Bays Shared Path is considered part of the Great Harbour Way/Te Aranui o Pōneke which is a walking and cycling route around Te Whanganui-a-tara, the harbour of Wellington from Fitzroy Bay in the east to Sinclair Head in the west.
The shared path is made up of two sections – between Point Howard and the northern end of Days Bay, and the southern end of Days Bay (Windy Point) to Eastbourne (Muritai Road / Marine Parade intersection).
Senior Project Engineer Simon Cager worked alongside a team of technical experts including engineers, planners, landscape architects and ecologists to ensure the potential effects to the local environment were assessed.
The design includes some seawall replacements that provide enhanced protection to Marine Drive and allow for future upgrades.
“The presence of penguins, the unique ecology of the area and the need to design a visually appealing path which sits alongside the natural environment are all complex challenges and need to be considered. Hutt City Council’s work and focus over the last year has been to balance and manage these challenges” says Simon Cager.
Once completed, the Eastern Bays Shared Path will form a part of the larger Lower Hutt walk and cycle network including; The Beltway, The Wainuiomata Hill Shared Path and the Hutt River Trail.
The resource consent application is available to read at huttcity.govt.nz/eastern-bays, submissions will open in the next couple of months.