Christchurch Coastal Pathway
Christchurch, Aotearoa New Zealand
Landscape Architect : Wraight + Associates
Recreation Planner : Rob Greenaway
Engineer : Beca
Client : Christchurch City Council + Christchurch Coastal Pathway Group
The proposed Christchurch Coastal Pathway is a shared pedestrian and cycleway that will run the 6.5km from Ferrymead Bridge to Scarborough Beach. This project entailed developing a vision, concept design and feasibility studies for the route in consultation with community, council, tangata whenua, SCIRT and other stakeholders. The pathway is a long-held idea and aspiration for people of the area and the project was initiated and co-managed by the Christchurch Coastal Pathway Group.
The proposed pathway traverses a number of distinct neighbourhoods and communities, as well as a range of environmental and edge conditions, which resulted in extensive research and consultation. Research and mapping exercises on the likes of ecology, history and hydrology informed three consultation events, each held at three different venues, central to the pathway neighbourhoods. By returning to communities with design options as well as a draft concept design, participants were given a say throughout a design process, rather than just at inception. This ensured it was enthusiastic and democratic, and encouraged community buy-in and ownership of the Coastal Pathway project.
A vision emerged for a green, accessible, varied and connected pathway. Key values and ideas were distilled to the desire for: ‘a necklace of jewels, connecting communities.’ Beyond access and amenity, the pathway’s benefits will be multiple across economic, environmental, cultural and social spheres. The pathway infrastructure will serve not just as local recreational and tourism asset but can contribute significantly to the area’s resilience in the event of future earthquakes.