Hutt City Council is celebrating a major milestone in the largest infrastructure project in the history of Lower Hutt.
Lower Hutt Mayor Campbell Barry says the lodging of resource consent applications for the RiverLink project marks the culmination of years of project development and collaboration involving the project team, key stakeholders and the community.
“This is the first tangible step the project has taken and now we can start working towards designing a project that will be truly transformative for Lower Hutt” says Campbell Barry.
“Alongside creating better transport connections and making our city more resilient, RiverLink will help boost economic and urban growth and reconnect our city towards the river.”
“The recent floods and the ongoing effects of COVID-19 shows how vital it is to invest in Lower Hutt’s core infrastructure. That’s why Council is investing $138.5 million to rejuvenate and protect the most densely populated flood plain in New Zealand.”
Council’s Director of Economy and Development Kara Puketapu-Dentice says Hutt City Council’s investment in the project includes new roads, a pedestrian bridge over Te Awa Kairangi Hutt River, as well as street-level improvements like laneway east-west connections throughout the city.
“Moving Melling Station into the city will make it easier for people to come into and commute out of the city as well as encouraging regional tourism in and out of the city.
“A new cycle and pedestrian bridge that connects directly to the relocated Melling station, and a network of new walkways and cycle ways connecting people to the river, will also make it more accessible for recreational purposes.”
Campbell Barry says this will decrease people’s reliance on private vehicles, and encourage more walking, cycling, and other ways of getting around Lower Hutt.
“This will help us meet our commitments around climate change, sustainability, and flood protection, and ultimately will create a safer city for the residents of Lower Hutt.”
RiverLink is a collaboration between Hutt City Council, Greater Wellington Regional Council, Hutt and Waka Kotahi NZ Transport Agency who are working together with Mana Whenua partners – Ngāti Toa Rangatira and Taranaki Whānui ki te Upoko o te Ika (Port Nicholson Block Settlement Trust).
Construction is scheduled to start in late 2022 and be completed in 2027.
It is estimated that more than $700 million will be invested in RiverLink. Hutt City Council has committed $138.5M to RiverLink.