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Funding has been approved to design the multimillion-dollar extension of the West Harbour shared pathway from St Leonards to Port Chalmers, with construction possibly to start within the next four years.
New Zealand Transport Agency (NZTA) Otago-Southland highway manager Ian Duncan said the design work for what would be the final section of the State Highway 88 shared cycling/walking path was expected to be mostly completed by June next year.
Tenders for the work, which would cost about $500,000, were expected to be sought next month.
He said the design work could proceed this year as funding came available after other walking and cycling projects elsewhere in the country did not proceed as quickly as planned.
There was some uncertainty around how long it would take to secure resource consents, but the NZTA was proposing funding for the construction of it be included in the 2015-18 national land transport work programme.
The NZTA previously estimated the work, involving significant land reclamation, to be worth about $6 million to $7 million.