QLDC explains "path to nowhere" project

by Peter Newport - Oct 07, 2020

Residents may be puzzled by hundreds of road cones on the road to Glenorchy surrounding a new path that appears to go - nowhere.

The work has been in progress for some weeks now, but its part of a bigger plan to stop cars parking on the often congested strip of land between the One Mile car park and the council's lake side pump station.

At the moment the path goes - nowhere.

Superficially the work was confusing - to say the least. Behind the hundreds of road cones a new path has been constructed that then stops - precisely nowhere.

It had all the hallmarks of a shovel ready, extensive use of ratepayer funds - but QLDC says the work has cost in the region of $50,000 - $60,000 and is part of a bigger plan.

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Here's the full details. Thanks to QLDC for a prompt and detailed response.

"The scope of work is construction of two individual jobs in our minor improvements programme which, together, achieve:

  • Construction of a new asphalt footpath, connecting an existing footpath that ends at the reserve to the existing gravel track that runs along the Glenorchy - Queenstown Road to the pump station;
  • The new asphalt footpath will result in removal of a short length of informal parking that was occurring on the shoulder between the roundabout and the 100km/h signs. This will improve safety in the area, eliminating unsafe parking or turning manoeuvres that were observed, and providing a clear path for pedestrians who previously had to walk on the road around parked cars;
  • Post and chain fence to ensure vehicles do not park on the new footpath/exit the car park over the verge directly onto the roundabout;
  • Some minor landscaping/grassing to tidy the area up

 The total cost of the work (including all elements as requested) is in the order of $50-60,000

 The timescale is

Point of entry into minor improvements programme;

  • August 2017 (pedestrian linkage between 1 mile roundabout and Glenorchy path to pump station),
  • August 2018 (barrier to prevent vehicles exiting the car park by driving across the verge and into the roundabout lane).

Confirmed on 2019/20 minor improvements programme during Feb 2020.

Construction is due to be complete October 2020.

The contractor is Downer. The work was procured under the roading maintenance contract with Downer. This contract provides provision for additional works that are in the nature of capital or construction works to be carried out under the contract. 

Eventually the new path will extend all the way to the council pump station, linking to the existing gravel path.

 This contract was tendered to the open market in 2016 for an initial term of 4.5 years with 2 x 3 year potential extensions of term. The tender evaluation team included an external Waka Kotahi NZTA qualified evaluator and an independent probity auditor. The first extension of term was awarded in 2020. 

 A selection of minor improvements projects are awarded under this contract each year both as part of the incentive structure of the contract and to provide for efficient delivery of safety projects. A number of minor improvements projects are also tendered to the open market.

 Works awarded to Downer under the maintenance contract are priced pursuant to principles provided for in the maintenance contract. All works are priced by the contractor for acceptance by QLDC. A selection of works are also independently assessed to ensure value for money is being achieved against the engineer’s estimate for the works. This project was one that received this independent review.

 The budget this work comes out of is Minor Improvements Programme (Wakatipu ward, Waka Kotahi NZTA subsidised at a rate of approximately 50%).

The work was approved by QLDC’s Maintenance and Operations Manager."



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