Central city  |  3 Jul 2019

Ōtākaro Limited has released its concept plan for the new pedestrian bridge it plans to build over a stretch of the Avon River between Manchester and Colombo streets.

Work on the bridge is expected to get under way around November.

An artist's impression of the new pedestrian bridge.

An artist's impression of the new pedestrian bridge that will stretch across the Avon River.

Ōtākaro Chief Executive John Bridgman says the 32-metre-long bridge will make the trip through the city along the Avon River Precinct quicker for cyclists and pedestrians and will cater for future developments in the North Frame and Avon River Precinct.

“The bridge sits on what we call a ‘desire line’, the route people would take over the bend in the Avon River if it were possible.

“By creating this link between Cambridge and Oxford Terraces, access to the City Promenade and central city will be improved for people living, working and visiting this area between Colombo and Manchester Streets,’’ Mr Bridgman says.

“Christchurch City Council expressed a desire for the bridge to be functional, simple and low maintenance, and this concept design reflects that.”

The bridge will not disturb the main vertical element of the Taurapa sculpture, which was commissioned by the Seattle Sister City Committee in 1997. One of the trailing stones will be moved slightly to accommodate the base of the bridge. 

Seattle Sister City Committee spokesperson Tim Nicholls says the bridge will enhance Taurapa by offering a whole new view of the sculpture.

“We’ll continue to work with Ōtākaro through the design process to incorporate elements in the area that will further highlight the connection of Seattle and Christchurch as Sister Cities and Taurapa’s message about the fragility of our environment.”

Mr Bridgman says design and construction of the pedestrian bridge will be funded by the Crown and will cost about $3 million.

“We expect construction to take about six months to complete, subject to the findings of further geotechnical surveys and working around the trout spawning season,” he says.