$1m grant ensures start for trail

Mark Williams
Mark Williams
A $1 million-plus grant from Central Lakes Trust has given the green light for a new 20.5km cycling/walking trail linking Arrowtown, Arthurs Point and Frankton.

The Queenstown Trails Trust, which has developed more than 100km of trails, had to source 50% of the estimated $7.82million cost of the new trail locally before the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment agreed to contribute the other half.

The Central Lakes Trust's grant - $1,132,225 spread over two years - had got the Queenstown trust over the line, chief executive Mark Williams said.

''This is fantastic.''

The stage one extension will start with a 6.7km trail between Arthurs Point and the new Tucker Beach trail, via the true left of the Shotover River.

The trail will start through a disused mining tunnel and finish at a new suspension bridge over the river.

Mr Williams said it would suit Arthurs Point-based Wakatipu High School pupils who lost easy access to their school since it had shifted to Frankton.

He hoped work on this section could begin this summer.

The project also includes a 13.8km trail from Arthurs Point to Millbrook Resort, near Arrowtown, which will take cyclists/walkers off Malaghans Rd.

Mr Williams noted this trail section would conveniently link with new trails being built on Coronet Peak, directly above.

He said Central Lakes Trust's grant came on top of significant funding from the Queenstown Lakes District Council, local philanthropists and ''Friends of the Trust'' supporters.

Following stage one, the Queenstown Trails Trust was planning a second stage to connect Jacks Point and Hanleys Farm with Frankton, via a new pedestrian bridge over the Kawarau River off Boyd Rd.

-By Philip Chandler

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