Tauranga City Council will partner with engineering consultants Beca and LandLAB for the construction of tidal stairs, Masonic Pier and pontoon for the city's waterfront.

Beca have been appointed as the engineering designers for the Access to Water project, and will work alongside urban designers LandLAB, who will provide overall design leadership.

Council project manager Richard Conning said Beca and LandLAB have a strong working relationship.

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"Beca has extensive experience in the design and construction of public amenity coastal structures, and have worked with LandLAB to deliver a significant number of projects on the Auckland waterfront, including tidal stairs," Mr Conning said.


"We are confident their combined expertise and experience will deliver safe, accessible and fun access to water, and in a way that reflects Tauranga's unique identity."

Beca Regional Manager - Bay of Plenty Gavin Frost said the company is excited about the project.

"We have many outstanding local natural features and look forward to working with Tauranga City Council and LandLAB to maximise the benefit of our harbour location and make the heart of our city an even better place to spend time."

Council is working with Beca and LandLAB to complete the detailed design, which will consider engineering, safety, ongoing maintenance and resource consent requirements.

Construction is currently scheduled to begin in July/August 2016 with completion for summer 2016/17. The indicative cost for building the tidal stairs, Masonic pier and pontoon ranges between $2.6 million and $3.2 million. These costs will be refined once the detailed design is completed.

Elected Members gave the go ahead to the project in December 2015, following feedback from the community on the proposed concept. It forms the first stage of Council providing access to water along the city's waterfront.

Mayor Stuart Crosby said being able to access the water was important to the community.
"Our waterfront is a significant part of our city's history and culture, and is such a jewel in our crown, so it's exciting to be able to make it more accessible for people to enjoy the water and engage with events and activities in our city centre," Mayor Crosby said.

Council's Long Term Plan 2015-2025 allocated $8 million, to be spent in the first five years, for city centre and waterfront development to improve the streetscape, waterfront and open spaces in the heart of the city.