Locals using the newly opened Mackays to Peka Peka (M2PP) section of the Kāpiti Expressway are seeing their district from a new perspective and appreciating the extensive environmental enhancements.
The $630 million 4-lane expressway, which is now part of State Highway 1, was officially opened on 16 February, a week before it opened to traffic. Transport Minister, Simon Bridges, described it as “literally the best road in New Zealand”.
The 18-kilometre expressway was constructed by the M2PP Alliance to whom Boffa Miskell was responsible for the landscape, urban design and ecological aspects, including the mitigation measures. These measures include a 140-hectare swathe of new planting bordering the sweeping curves of the new road, 10.5 hectares of restored or created wetlands, 6 km of stream riparian planting,16 kilometres of a shared pathway for cyclists, walkers and horse-riders, and ‘hard landscape’ components, such as the bridge abutment faces, noise-attenuation walls and retaining walls that reveal attention to high quality detailed design.
After seven years’ of multi-disciplinary work on the project from the early scoping and consenting stages, the Boffa Miskell team were very pleased to hear positive comments from members of the public who explored on foot, bus and cycle at the ‘Kāpiti Coast Expressday’ before the road opened to traffic. Bron Faulkner, our M2PP detailed design team leader, says the new alignment has opened up new panoramas of the area that people have not before experienced, including new perspectives on Kāpiti Island and Kāpiti escarpment as well as the new green corridor.
“People were commenting on how beautiful it was. That gave us a real buzz, because it has always been our objective to deliver to the local community a legacy environment that will bring out the special character of the Kāpiti Coast and enable people to get out and enjoy it.”
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For further information please contact Bron Faulkner
6 March 2017