Stepping stone in Quarryman’s Trail

UNDER WAY: An aerial photo of cycle lanes being constructed at the Sparks Rd and Lyttelton St.

The first stage of a cycle route that will eventually connect Halswell and the central city is nearing completion with the last few intersections and crossings opening soon.

Construction work started on the Quarryman Trail cycleway last October.

The first 4.6km stage of the route, from Moorhouse Ave to Victors Rd, is expected to be finished by the end of June. In the next few weeks, traffic signals will be turned on at two new intersections and two new controlled crossings for cyclists and pedestrians.

A pedestrian and cyclist crossing from Rydal St to Sparks Rd near Hoon Hay School became operational last week. Signals at the Lyttelton St and Sparks Rd intersection will be open from May 28 and traffic lights will go on at Sparks Rd and Hoon Hay Rd from June 5.

Another pedestrian and cyclist crossing has been built at the intersection of Barrington St and Strauss St and this will open in June, once the new shared path connecting Roker St and Barrington St is finished.

The contractors, Isaac Construction Ltd, have completed the intersection upgrades using ‘deep lift asphalt’. This is a relatively new technique where the asphalt is a thicker layer than usual and allowed faster construction. It is also stronger and more long-lasting, reducing future maintenance, the city council said.

Contractor Fulton Hogan has worked on the section of the Quarryman’s Trail between Moorhouse Ave and Roker St which is already open, and includes two new and three upgraded intersections.

The final stage of the cycleway, from Victors Rd to Te Hapua in Halswell, will be constructed at a later date subject to funding availability.

The city council’s planning and delivery transport manager Lynette Ellis, says the new intersections will benefit motorists as well as improving safety for pedestrians and cyclists.

“They will help ease congestion, particularly at peak times at the busy intersections of Lyttelton St and Sparks Rd and at Hoon Hay Rd and Sparks Rd which were previously roundabouts and now have signals. The zebra crossing outside Hoon Hay School has been replaced with pedestrian signals which will make it much safer for children.”

Long term, the cycle route will provide a safe way for people to commute between Halswell and the central city, she says.

The Quarryman’s Trail is part of a network of Major Cycle Routes, being built across the city by the city council to link shopping centres, businesses, schools, parks and popular recreation destinations.