Work has begun on the Airport Rd/SH21 underpass with the ubiquitous orange road cones marking the work site between Wiremu Tamihana Dr and the Tamahere Dr roundabout.
A 50km/hr temporary speed limit is in place and in the first month of the project construction company Downer will work in the shoulder of the road, moving existing services to allow the underpass to be constructed.
It is also making a temporary path within the Tamahere Park, in place of the existing one which is within the worksite. The path will follow the alignment of the future, permanent path.
Some minor tree pruning and removal has been completed.
The project is being funded by Waka Kotahi NZ Transport Agency as part of its section of the Te Awa River Ride shared cycling/walking path between Cambridge and Hamilton.
The underpass is designed to provide a safe connection under Airport Rd/SH21, not only for Tamahere residents but for the thousands of walkers and cyclists who are expected to use Te Awa River Ride each month.
The walls of the ramps down to the underpass will include designs reflecting the history and importance of the Tamahere area to mana whenua.
The Cambridge to Hamilton section of Te Awa is being built in four different sections by Waka Kotahi, Waipa District Council, Waikato District Council and Hamilton City Council.
Both the underpass and the full Te Awa River Ride path between Cambridge and Hamilton are expected to be complete and open to cyclists and walkers by the end of the year.
Work started on the last two sections of Te Awa River Ride through Tamahere in February and paths have since emerged at pace.
They are the $2.5 million Mangaonua Gully section, between Hillcrest and the Hamilton Gardens to Riverglade Dr and from Riverglade Dr along Newell Rd, Wiremu Tamihana Dr to Airport Rd/SH21.