Foxton Beach’s popular pump track has been awarded Active Park of the Year at the Recreation Aotearoa 2019 New Zealand Parks Awards.
Active Park of the Year is awarded to an active adventure or sports park with an outstanding natural environment. Applicants must demonstrate innovation; community engagement in the development or operation of the park; overall excellence; achievement of intended goals; budgetary efficiency and effectiveness; and financial, environmental and social sustainability.
Horowhenua District Council Parks and Property Lead North, Sean Hester, says the award is official recognition of what has been a very successful project.
“The pump track has been hugely popular with locals and visitors alike since it opened in March last year. We’ve had overwhelmingly positive feedback from track users, as well as from people with limited mobility. We asphalted pathways surrounding the pump track as part of the project, and people who use wheelchairs and mobility scooters have told us they have greater access to the park as a result.”
In addition, the track is attracting visitors, with just over 32 per cent of track users coming from outside Horowhenua and about 18 per cent travelling from areas of the district outside Foxton and Foxton Beach.
“It’s a great asset for our community, bringing economic as well as recreational benefits. The track is buzzing on the weekends and during school holidays, and owners of local motor camps and cafes in Foxton Beach have been very positive about it, saying they’ve experienced increased patronage since it was built,” says David Roache, Chair of the Foxton Community Board.
Mr Hester said achieving an award-winning project had been “a team effort”.
“The expertise of Southstar Adventures as our main contractor has been invaluable, as have the contributions from other contractors who looked after the landscaping, design, pathways and amenities – Recreation Services, Boffa Miskell, and Caldow,” he said.
“We’d also like to acknowledge the input and support from members of the Foxton Beach community during the public engagement process. This project has been a true partnership.”