Taniwha design reflects harbour’s guardian Matamata

New panels featuring a design by local artist Simon Kaan are nearly ready to be installed on...
New panels featuring a design by local artist Simon Kaan are nearly ready to be installed on State Highway88, near Port Chalmers. PHOTO: PETER MCINTOSH
A new  piece of art depicting the story of Otago Harbour’s guardian taniwha will soon be installed along State Highway88 near Port Chalmers.

Work started about a year ago on the $31million of safety improvement work between Dunedin and Port Chalmers, including building the final 5km section of a shared path between St Leonards and Port Chalmers.

The path is now at a stage when concrete retaining wall panels will be installed in the next few weeks.

Working with iwi, the NZ Transport Agency commissioned a local artist, Simon Kaan, to visually tell the story of the Otago Harbour guardian taniwha Matamata on the panels.

Yesterday, Mr Kaan said the process of coming up with the design and getting feedback from the public had taken some time, and he was excited about seeing the panels in place.

‘‘Hopefully, people just really enjoy it, to have something that’s not just a normal wall, and they can take some ownership of it.’’

The shared pathway project is on track to be completed by the end of 2022.

Senior project manager Jason Forbes said Covid-19 disruptions had affected the project, but contractor Downer had done a great job to keep the project on track by reworking the programme and working on multiple fronts.

daisy.hudson@odt.co.nz


 

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