We’d like to hear what you think about proposed plans for three pedestrian/cycle bridges (two replacement bridges and one in a new location) that will be developed along the Green Spine of the Ōtākaro Avon River Corridor.

Project status: Analysis & reporting
Open for feedback: 2nd June 2020 - 29th June 2020
28 May 2020

Supporting safe, strong and healthy communities that are well connected to each other and with the wider city is one of the objectives of the Ōtākaro Avon River Regeneration Plan. Re-establishing connections that were severed due to the earthquakes, and making new connections through and across the area, are all part of how we can support communities, and encourage more people to enjoy the area more regularly.

We’ll be working with the Matapopore Charitable Trust to integrate Ngāi Tūāhuriri / Ngāi Tahu cultural values and narratives into the design of these bridges.

Avondale Bridge

This new bridge provides a connection between the Avondale and Aranui communities, the Donnell Sports Park and the future Eastern Reach wetland restoration area.

This steel truss bridge has a 45m span and is 4.5m high with a walkway that’s 3m wide. We’ve chosen a concrete deck to help minimise vibration, and to make it more resilient in any future earthquakes. It also has sliding and jackable abutments, to mitigate lateral spreading.

As the bridge is approximately 1m higher than the existing stopbanks, there are ramps leading up to it for access.

The design of the bridge will acknowledge the connection between Ngāi Tūāhuriri / Ngāi Tahu and Ōruapaeroa (Travis Wetland) which was once a kāinga mahinga kai (a food gathering place and settlement).

Medway Bridge

The Medway Bridge reinstates a pedestrian/cycle connection that has been missing since the previous bridge was famously buckled in the September 2010 earthquake.

In designing this bridge, we considered the expansive views and how the surrounding regeneration area creates a sense of space. The bridge’s white trusses are designed to blend in with the sky rather than the land.

This steel truss bridge has a 45m span and is 4.5m high with a walkway that’s 3m wide. We’ve chosen a concrete deck to help minimise vibration, and to make it more resilient in any future earthquakes. It also has sliding and jackable abutments to mitigate lateral spreading.

As the bridge is approximately 1m higher than the existing stopbanks, there are ramps leading up to it for access.

Snell Bridge

The Snell Bridge follows the same alignment as the old pedestrian bridge that was damaged in the earthquakes. It reconnects Dallington and Avondale and provides an important connection to and from Avon Park.

In designing this bridge, we considered the forest regeneration planned for this area, and how the bridge could create a connection between land, water and sky. The arches are designed to draw the eye upwards, with the white trusses creating a connection with the sky.

This steel truss bridge has a 35m span and is 4.5m high with a walkway that’s 3m wide. We’ve chosen a concrete deck to help minimise vibration, and to make it more resilient in any future earthquakes. It also has sliding and jackable abutments to mitigate lateral spreading.

As the bridge is approximately 1m higher than the existing stopbanks, there are ramps leading up to it for access.

We’re also seeking feedback on the Dallington Landing(external link) – the first of the riverside landings that will be developed along the Green Spine of the Ōtākaro Avon River Corridor.

Why are we doing these bridges first?

In addition to the $144 million that the Council has set aside to invest into the Otākāro Avon River Corridor over the next 10 years, and the commitment of $40 million from the Government’s Christchurch Regeneration Acceleration Fund, the Council has received an additional $13,765,500 of funding from the Christchurch Earthquake Appeal Trust (CEAT). CEAT selected three pedestrian and cycle footbridges (two replacement and one new) and a landing at Dallington for funding.

About the ‘Green Spine’ 

The Green Spine forms the core of the Ōtākaro Avon River Regeneration Area. About eleven kilometres long and 345 hectares in size, it extends along both sides of the river and provides the thread that brings the Regeneration Area together. 

As there are a lot of geotechnical constraints with the land next to the river, development of this area is focussed on restoring native habitats, wetland development and supporting public access. The Green Spine will include large areas of ecological restoration and wetlands, walking paths, nature trails, cycleways, riverside landings and community spaces such as picnic spots and barbecue areas.

To help deliver the Green Spine, the Council is using $40 million from the Christchurch Regeneration Acceleration Fund (CRAF) to create pathways and connections along the full length and across the corridor. Money from this fund is also being used to provide basic public facilities at up to seven landing sites, and to start an ecological restoration.

In addition, the Council has planned in its 2018-2028 Long Term Plan some major infrastructure projects within and through the corridor, including the replacement of Pages Road bridge, the City to Sea cycleway, stormwater treatment facilities and floodplain management.