Cycle trail gets big grant


Nelson MP Nick Smith welcomes Friday’s announcement from Prime Minister John Key of $391,691 in funding for the Tasman Great Taste Trail and $49,818 for the Old Ghost Road as part of the Maintaining the Quality of the Great Rides fund.

The Government is investing more than $1.2 million in seven new projects to enhance and maintain the quality of the New Zealand Cycle Trail.

The Tasman District Council was awarded $223,481 to improve safety, prevent coastal erosion and provide wayfinding signage on the Tasman Great Taste Trail and $168,210 to repair damage to the trail surface, stop banks and swing bridges caused by extreme weather events in February and March 2016.

“I’m really pleased our local Tasman Great Taste Trail has been selected as it is an asset to our community. I am a regular user, recreation, fitness and family time, and rate it as one of the best cycle trails in country. My favourite section is from Richmond to Mapua through Rabbit Island, with the unique ferry service across the Waimea Estuary,” Nick says.

“At a local level, this funding boost is great news for our cycle trail and nationally it is part of maintaining and enhancing the quality of the New Zealand Cycle Trail. I’m really keen to ensure the cycle trail is maintained to a high standard so both locals and tourists can continue to benefit from it.”

The Mokihinui-Lyell Backcountry Trust receives $49,818 to upgrade a 13.5km section of the Old Ghost Road trail between Seddonville and Mokihinui Forks Hut to meet New Zealand Cycle Trail Grade 3 standards.

Funding for these seven projects is in addition to the Budget 2016 announcement of government funding for a further $25 million over four years to extend or enhance existing Great Rides. Applications for this new funding are expected to open in the next couple of months.

“My next challenge is to support the Tasman Great Taste Trail in their application for capital funding for the next stage. I will be working with the Trust in the coming months on their application that is so vital to our region maximising the opportunities of the national cycleways initiative.”