by Emma Perry
A new bike park at Caroline Bay is set for completion at the end of next month.
The Timaru Suburban Lions Club has secured funding required for the first stage of the more than $370,000 project, and work by contractor Fulton Hogan began last week.
The park will mimic a roadway with solar-powered traffic lights, a roundabout and two lanes for cycle traffic.
It will be located next to the skate bowl at Caroline Bay, covering about a quarter of a hectare.
The first stage of the design, the body of the park costing about $200,000, is expected to be completed before the end of December.
Timaru Suburban Lions Club member Bruce Fraser said the project had been four years in the making, and to see it come to fruition was exciting.
“We’re stoked .. it’s been a long time coming but we’re now making steady progress.”
The community support had been “phenomenal,” he said.
Funds had come from the Community Trust Mid and South Canterbury, the Timaru District Council stimulus fund, Trust Aoraki, Alpine Energy and the Lloyd Morgan Lions Club Charitable Trust, among others.
“We’re very grateful,” Mr Fraser said.
The park would provide educational benefit for children across the community.
“It’s not only fun, but kids are going to be able to learn to ride [a bike] and learn about how the real road works before they get behind the wheel.
“They can see how a roundabout works .. how to obey the road rules.”
Mr Fraser said the club was still raising the remaining $50,000 needed.
The club had held one raffle in August with prizes from DC Cycles, Husqvarna and New World, which raised about $1800, and planned on holding another one before the end of the month.