Queenstown’s trails get $1 million boost

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The Community Trust of Southland has chipped in $1 million to the 90km Queenstown Trail. 

The trust announced an extra $951,000 at a function last night – on top of $49,000 granted earlier. 

Wakatipu Trails Trust chief executive Kaye Parker says the cash injection gives the green light for construction of 57km of new walking/cycling trails – including five bridges and an underpass – between Queenstown Bay, Arrowtown, Gibbston and Jack’s Point. 

The first new section, known as the Twin Rivers Trail, is about to be built between the old Shotover Bridge and Morven Ferry. 

Impetus for the $5.2m trail initially came from a Government grant of $1.8km. That’s also been supplemented by $1m from the Central Lakes Trust, $300,000 from Queenstown Lakes District Council and Wakatipu Trails Trust’s own fundraising. 

Parker says Community Trust of Southland’s grant leaves her trust to raise about $600,000 more before the trail’s due to open in September next year. 

Community Trust chief executive John Prendergast says he was impressed by WTT’s fundraising initiative, and the fact the trail will be a local as well as a visitor amenity. 

Prendergast adds CTS had already provided about $950,000 for the Gibbston Trail and restoration of the old Shotover Bridge. 

“The two major trusts in this area have both come to the party when we realise there’s been huge demands on both, and we’re grateful for their confidence in us,” Parker says.