Port Macquarie's foreshore will be more user-friendly when work is complete in stage one of the $3.1 million Bicentennial Walkway.
Port Macquarie-Hastings Council has kickstarted the stage one works.
The Bicentennial Walkway stage one project, spanning 550 metres from Town Green West along the foreshore to Kooloonbung Creek Nature Reserve, is being delivered to create a safer and more accessible pathway for all.
The joint federal government and Port Macquarie-Hastings Council-funded project will deliver a continuous pathway connecting the nature reserve and Port Macquarie CBD.
The pathway will include underpasses at two bridges.
The council will remove the boat ramp at the end of Short Street to connect Town Green West to Town Wharf, as well as renew and widen the existing boardwalk and pathway along the Hasting River foreshore through to Kooloonbung Creek.
Sewer rising and recycled water mains in Short Street carpark and Kooloonbung Creek Reserve will be relocated, and Town Wharf will be upgraded on behalf of Maritime Infrastructure Delivery Office - Transport for NSW.
Council's group manager community Lucilla Marshall said the project would enhance the accessibility, safety and overall aesthetics of the Port Macquarie foreshore.
Ms Marshall said the path would pass under two bridges aiming to improve the safety and aesthetics of the foreshore walkway by diverting pedestrians away from road crossings on both Buller and Gordon streets.
"This walkway upgrade will provide exceptional return on our investment, by allowing for the unimpeded flow of pedestrian movement right adjacent to one of the most picturesque parts of Port Macquarie," she said.
"It could not have been possible without the support of both the Town Centre Master Plan committee and the Commonwealth Government, who combined have invested a total of $3.1 million toward the project.
"Council thanks the federal Member for Cowper Pat Conaghan MP for his support and advocacy in securing federal funding for this project."
Council has engaged contractor Building Heights to undertake the work.
Construction is expected to be complete by September 2022, weather permitting.
There will be a shutdown period over Christmas from December 21, 2021 to January 12, 2022, to ease pedestrian access during the busy holiday period.
Council's project manager Stephen Mizzi said the council would ensure pedestrian and business access was maintained and managed throughout the project to minimise disruption.
"We understand the work may cause some minor inconvenience for businesses and we thank them for their cooperation as we complete this important upgrade," he said.
The Bicentennial Walkway stage one is an investment from the federal government through the Bushfire Local Economic Recovery Fund ($3.05 million).
The council has contributed additional funding from the Town Centre Master Plan fund. The maintenance works for Town Wharf is funded by Transport for NSW.
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