Skypath receives a YES.
Getacross have informed me that The Auckland Council Transport Committee said YES, they support the pathway. Next step is the Finance committee in May so let’s cross fingers and hope that we see construction underway real soon.
Here’s a summary of what Council is being asked:
Auckland ratepayers aren’t being asked to provide any money for the construction or operation of the SkyPath.
Private investor Morrison and Co’s PIP Fund will provide 100% of the $31 million cost.
For the SkyPath to proceed, Council needs to be onboard as a partial underwriter, and in return, will share in the financial returns.
Council’s report uses the lowest estimates of people likely to use the SkyPath, using figures provided by their own experts. But in the (unlikely) event that the SkyPath patronage doesn’t meet even these most conservative estimates, Council still has the reassurance that the private investor (the PIP Fund) will take on the first and most risky $1million of risk. Council is only being asked to take on a partial underwrite for the lower part of the risk. In return, Council gets a share of dividends and ownership of the SkyPath after 20years.
NZTA are supporting the proposal, and have confirmed that the SkyPath will not affect the service life or capacity of the Auckland Harbour Bridge. NZTA Auckland Regional Director Stephen Town advises that NZTA has put plans for an alternative walking and cycling facility as part of the next harbour crossing on hold in favour of SkyPath, as a feasible engineering solution.
The Skypath connects to the Westhaven promenade and cycle path through to the city centre and multiplies the benefits of this investment by Council, adding real economic benefits for Auckland from tourism and recreational use as well as transport.
For more information, check out the full Council report on the SkyPath on the Committee Agenda.