More than $400,000 has been allocated toward Kauri dieback track upgrades in Birkenhead War Memorial Park to improve accessibility within the park while preserving precious local kauri forest, thanks to Kaipātiki Local Board.
The board approved the funding and designs for the upgrades presented to them by council’s kauri dieback track specialist team at their 21 June business meeting.
A joint-funded project with the Natural Environment Targeted Rate (NETA), upgrades to the tracks in the area will include the construction of two-metre-wide raised boardwalks and bridges with driven pile foundations.
Kaipātiki Local Board Chair John Gillon explains that the board was committed to ensuring the preservation and enhancement of the park.
"This is a really important project for the local board and Kaipātiki residents. Birkenhead War Memorial Park is well known as a centre for sport and recreation, but it also has a huge area of beautiful bush and kauri. It would be devastating if kauri dieback disease took hold and the bush was closed. By upgrading the tracks to a standard that helps to protect kauri, we are ensuring that the whole park can be enjoyed for years to come."
Existing tracks will be upgraded and widened to make them compliant. Access will be improved with the addition of handrails and the removal of stairs throughout the park. An existing walking bridge that is no longer fit for purpose will also be removed as part of the upgrade.
"We’ve taken this opportunity to make the new track as accessible as possible, by funding options that remove steps and improve access. The upgraded track will connect into our new concrete shared path (opening Sunday 2 July) to provide a fantastic walking circuit in the heart of Birkenhead," says John.
Work on the upgrades is set to start in September this year and be completed by mid-2024 so watch this space for updates.
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