Tuesday, July 16, 2024

Funding to pedal cycle trail maintenance

The Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment (MBIE) has announced more than $934,000 for maintenance projects on the Great Rides of the New Zealand Cycle Trails, stretching from the Far North to Southland.

Funding from the Ngā Haerenga, the New Zealand Cycle Trails will support a range of projects including interpretation panels and safety signage along a number of trails and the resurfacing of trails. Three trails will also receive Extreme Events funding to repair their trails following adverse weather conditions, the Ministry confirmed

“This funding will directly contribute to the tourism recovery in the regions, supporting local jobs and businesses,” said MBIE Manager Investment Management and Performance, David Talbot.

“Cycle trails are valuable components of our national tourism offering. They are incredibly popular with both local users, domestic and international tourists.”

An evaluation of the Great Rides released earlier this year showed that cycle trail users directly contributed more than $950 million to communities between 1 July 2020 and 30 June 2021.

Over the 12 months, 27% of the New Zealand adult population has participated in a cycle tourism activity; while almost 2.19 million trips were taken across the New Zealand Cycle Trails Great Rides network.

“The community and charitable trusts which maintain the Great Rides carry out countless hours of volunteer work for the love of cycling and mountain biking, but they also rely on the government with investment to maintain and enhance the trails,” said Mr Talbot.

Ngā Haerenga, the New Zealand Cycle Trails Fund provides baseline funding to maintain and enhance the quality of the Great Rides through the Maintaining Great Rides funding. Funding applications require matching co-funding.

The successful applicants consist of a variety of city and district councils and trusts who will use the funding for trail resurfacing, interpretation panels, signage to address health and safety concerns, toilet and shelter construction, and extreme events recovery works.

“This funding support will help maintain the best of New Zealand’s cycle trails in top condition as regions are welcoming back international visitors. Funding will also be used for trail managers salaries and other operational costs, ensuring there is a dedicated trail manager to look after each trail,” said Mr Talbot.

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