Hauraki Herald, Tuesday July 6 1999
Walk the walk in Waihi
By NICOLA BOYES
Walkways may link Paeroa, Waihi and Waihi Beach in the future.
The Waihi Walkways group, run under the Go Waihi umbrella, has been meeting for the past six months discussing possible walkways linking the three towns.
Project facilitator Tessa Mackenzie says the walkways are only in the research and feasibility stage, with two community wage earners exploring possible walkway routes and discussing them with landowners.
Various groups and volunteers have come on board with the project which is expected to take about five years. Waihi Gold is one organisation that has offered its backing for the project, and has begun work on a walkway around Gilmour Lake towards Black Hill in Waihi.
Other organisations involved include Habitat Enhancement Landcare Partnership, Forest and Bird and the Information Centre.
The first major walkway is expected to be started in the New Year and Mrs Mackenzie says if they all go ahead they could be a real asset for Waihi.
"In tourism walking is a huge market; the Karangahake Gorge gets about 60,000 people a year walking through it. If we extend the walkways it could bring extra money into the town."
Walkways volunteer Charlie Cooper says the walkways will be a community project built with all different walking levels and fitness in mind.
He says most will be constructed in loops with walkways on the drawing board for the western end, eastern end and centre of town.
"The idea is to get people out and show off the town."
He says points of historical interest could be illustrated by using plaques on the walks.
Costs and funding for the project has yet to be organised.
Waihi District Walkways Inc. PO Box 241 Waihi New Zealand
Send e- mail to: Waihi Walkways