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The Kaihu Valley Trail (KVT) will be a 35km walking and cycling track following sections of the former rail corridor from Dargaville to Donnelly’s Crossing on the West It will eventually form part of the Ancient Kauri Trail from Maungaturoto to the Hokianga Harbour.
The Kaipara District Council (KDC) has received $4 million from the Infrastructure Reference Group to construct the KVT. Locally-owned businesses and operators will be prioritised for contract and sub-contract work.
The KVT project will enable both KDC and Te Roroa the opportunity to collaborate to ensure the economic and cultural success of the Trail.
KVT will also provide an opportunity for new tourism activities, bringing people and visitor spending to Dargaville and surrounds, and new business opportunities relating to the Trail.
The Council has been seeking to establish the Trail for some years, resulting in an on-and-off again experience for many members in the community. Now, with confirmed funding we are able to progress the design and work of establishing the Trail.
Building the Trail completely off-road would cost in the order of $10 million so parts of the Trail will use low volume existing roads (some of these are in the rail corridor) to establish the Trail from Donnelly’s Crossing to Dargaville within the next two years. Over time, as more funds are available, more of the track will move off-road.
We are still working with landowners to determine where the Trail may go and are working through options with them. We now have a proposed route for the KVT. This is based on the conversations we’ve had so far with landowners and factors in engineering requirements, the impact on the environment and the cost.
Please note that this is not a confirmed route. We are continuing to work with landowners and to assess the feasibility of some parts of the Trail. If your property looks to be in the vicinity of the proposed route and have not yet been contacted please contact Amanda (details below).
The KVT project is supported by the NZ Transport Agency Twin Coast Discovery Route (TCDR) Business Case – Northland Journeys and Cycling Implementation Plan.
The Kaipara economy had the second-fastest growth across all areas over the 12 months to December 2020, and the largest increase in annual tourism spending across New Zealand. Part of this higher spending was the surging performance of tourism in Northland over the last year, as Kiwis looked to explore more of New Zealand. Kaipara sits well alongside the greater Auckland region.
Other NZ Cycle Trails have found the Trails in their community have contributed to the community’s economy and improved the community spirit and well-being.
Kaipara locals will be able to experience the valley and the pathway that their ancestors and whakapapa used and lived in. This valley and corridor have provided substantial economic benefits to the Kaipara District over many centuries and, in a way, we are recycling that opportunity.
KDC's Kaipara Kōrero (an e-Newsletter) will keep you up to date with the progress of the Trail. Sign up for the Kaipara Kōrero.
Once we start the Trail you will be able to track progress via our website. Watch this space.
A KVT Expo/Hui will be organised for the wider community, to talk about the Trail and the impacts and economic opportunities it brings. We also hope to share experiences from other shared Trails around New Zealand.
If you have questions about the Trail you can contact our Community Engagement Advisor, Amanda Bennett at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 09 439 1206.
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