A new multi-million dollar bridge looks set to be built in Auckland’s Wynyard Quarter in time for the next America’s Cup

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The Auckland Council controlled Panuku Development is planning to build a new $25.7 million dollar bridge in Wynyard Quarter to replace an existing structure installed less than 10 years ago.

The council’s redevelopment agency plans to build the proposed new double leaf bascule bridge in time for the America’s Cup in 2021 and has released a video to show what it will look life.

Panuku spokeswoman Melanie Roberts says the costing is a preliminary figure at this stage.

“This is an early estimate that is made up of a range of components, including consultation and consenting, as well as the infrastructure cost to build the bridge itself. This budget may change as there is a lot more design work to be undertaken and a contestable procurement process to find out who is able to build the bridge, and at what cost,” she says.

“We are being transparent about this indicative budget at this stage as we want to get on with the consenting process to try to meet the timeframe to get the bridge built in time for the America’s Cup, but please note it is likely to change.”

According to the Council Controlled Organisation, the existing Wynyard Crossing was installed as a temporary structure for the 2011 Rugby World Cup and it is now reaching the end of its life and needs frequent and costly repairs to keep it running smoothly.

Panuku says it hopes to see resource consent signed off in mid-2019 and construction is expected to start in early 2020 and be completed by the end of next year. Panuku says during the construction a temporary pontoon bridge will set up for pedestrians moving between Te Wero Island and Viaduct Harbour.

It says the proposed new double leaf bascule bridge will be 60% lighter to lift than a single arm design, like the existing structure and will use far less energy to operate.

Auckland Mayor Phil Goff is committed to the new proposed bridge and says it reflects the council’s commitment to enhancing and transforming the city’s waterfront.

“The new bridge will operate more efficiently and cater for the greater number of people who live, work and pass through Wynyard Quarter, as well as the surge of visitors expected to be spending time on the waterfront for the America’s Cup. Hosting AC36 will help to accelerate more projects like this. It will leave an infrastructure legacy for Auckland that will benefit our city well after the yachts have stopped racing.”

Panuku says if the consent to build the bridge is delayed and it isn’t able to be built for the America’s Cup in 2021, works will be undertaken to ensure the current crossing operates as efficiently as possible during that time.

In February Panuku Auckland and marine services company Orams announced that a planned new $100 million marine facility to refit boats and ships on Wynyard Quarter was one step closer. But before it can proceed it will need the approval of the New Zealand Overseas Investment Office, which is expected to release its findings soon. 

Orams Marine Village was bought by Australian owned Ariadne Australia Limited in 2007 for $43 million and the company will have a stake in the development. The new facility will be built on the corner of Beaumont and Jellicoe streets adjoining Orams Marine Village. It will be able to cater for vessels of up to 800 tonnes. 

The land is currently owned by Panuku which will sell the developer a 125 year lease for the site.

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