The path will be officially opened over the weekend in two events – a formal event on Friday 31 May and a community event on Monday 3 June, marking the completion of the project.
The new 4m wide, off-road, sealed and separated pathway is designed to complement the Pukeatua Bridge at the peak of Wainuiomata Hill, completed in 2015. It provides pedestrians and cyclists safe access up and over the steep and winding Wainuiomata Hill Road.
Now completed, Te Hikoi Ararewa forms a part of the existing and planned larger Lower Hutt walk and cycle network including; The Beltway, The Eastern Bays Shared Path and the Hutt River Trail.
Funding for the project was split between Hutt City Council $5.6million, the Government’s Urban Cycleway Fund $1.5million and NZTA $5.8million.
The programme for the formal opening (Friday 31 May) is:
- 9.45am: Guests gather at Pelorus Trust Sports House in Seaview and shuttle to summit
- 10am: Iwi will say a karakia as guests are escorted onto site
- 10.15am: Words of welcome from Lower Hutt Mayor Ray Wallace
- 10:30am: Minister’s welcome – Minister Julie Anne Genter
- 10:45am: Ribbon cutting ceremony
- 10:50am: Return to Pelorus Trust Sports House for morning tea
- 11:10am: Karakia kai - Mix and mingle
- 12:00pm: Finish - Dignitaries and guests depart
The programme for the Community Open Day (Monday 3 June) is:
- 11am: Blessing and ceremony – Base of path, Wainuiomata side, Life City Church
- 11.15-12.30pm: Parade of people walk up the new path to the viewpoint carpark, where they’ll be welcomed by Wainuiomata High School kapa haka group and poly groups led by Jo Harawira
- 12.30pm onwards: Music, fruit, water, raffle tickets, memory board and pavement chalk to remain at summit to celebrate everyone who reaches the top.
- 12pm-2pm: Family Day games, bouncy castle, food, BBQ, facepainting etc ongoing at Life City Church.