A realignment of Papaiti Rd will bypass Mosquito Point but the popular Whanganui River swimming spot will remain accessible.

"It'll be more set up like a proper reserve," Whanganui District Council senior roading engineer Rui Leitao said.

"It will still be accessible but it'll be by a purpose built access road. It'll be a road lined with trees going into a reserve."

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The $1 million project, which is due to begin in February, will be the last of the roading repairs following the 2015 flooding which caused extensive damage to Whanganui's roading network.

There are two slips at either side of the Mosquito Point corner and Mr Leitao said it was cheaper to abandon a 1.5km stretch of the current road which follows the river and cut a new road through land which the council has recently bought of private land owners.

"It's all been very agreeable. Luckily it's only one property to deal with," Mr Leitao said.

"There'll be minimal disruption to existing traffic."

A section of Papaiti Rd will move inland from the river. Photo/ Whanganui District Council
A section of Papaiti Rd will move inland from the river. Photo/ Whanganui District Council

Downer won the tender to do the work and is making initial preparations at the site.

"The road in that space in front of Mosquito Point will stay there for people to park their cars basically. There's no point in ripping it up if it's already there," Mr Leitao said.

"It was very important to keep Mosquito Point and make that a park feature type."

The rest of the old road, which the council owns, will be planted in trees.


Eighty-two per cent of the project cost will be funded by the New Zealand Transport Agency with the remainder picked up by Whanganui ratepayers.

The project is expected to be completed when contractors finish in May.