The first section of a new cycleway that will eventually connect cyclists to the Little River Rail Trail has been officially opened.
Transport Minister Simon Bridges opened the 1.8km section of Puari Ki Wairewa: The Little River Link on Thursday morning along with Christchurch Mayor Lianne Dalziel.
The cycleway is one of 13 Major Cycle Routes being built as part of a $156 million investment by the Christchurch City Council in new cycling infrastructure.
It has been jointly funded by the Council, the National Land Transport Fund, and the Government's Urban Cycleways Fund.
The completed section of the cycleway takes cyclists from South Hagley Park across Moorhouse Ave and along Grove Rd, Collins St and Jerrold St before connecting them to the shared path that runs alongside the Southern Motorway.
"Christchurch has a vision to be a cycle-friendly city. The completion of this $6.7 million section will help cater for and improve on the 21 per cent increase in the number of people cycling into the city centre,'' said Mr Bridges.
Ms Dalziel said the first of a network of cycleways opening was an exciting moment for the city.
“Post-earthquakes a more cycle friendly city ranked among the most common themes that came up, so it great to see a safe and attractive cycle network starting to emerge,'' the Mayor said.
“Over the next few months we will see the completion of the Papanui Parallel, Uni–Cycle and the first stage of the Rapanui – Shag Rock Cycleway routes. Work will also start on the Quarryman’s Trail, Northern Line and the second stage of the Rapanui – Shag Rock Cycleway. As these routes roll out we will start to see more people drawn towards riding a bike. All of these routes offer attractive rides and good connections to attractions around the city.''
Manuka Cottage Community Development Manager Cherylan Davies said a genuine effort had been made to engage the community in the design and construction of the cycleway and it had been great to see the community get behind the project.
“The cycleway will help the neighbourhood to be a safe place to travel through whether you are driving, walking or biking,” Ms Davies said.