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Funding available for projects that improve public access to the outdoors
Groups undertaking projects to enhance access to the outdoors should consider applying for funding through the New Zealand Walking Access Commission's Enhanced Access Fund.
A total of $56,000 is available across two funding rounds in 2016-2017 to support projects that help secure certain and enduring access for current and future generations.
NZWAC chief executive Eric Pyle said funding applications were being invited for the first of the two rounds, with round one applications due by 30 September.
“Across New Zealand, there are many organisations doing important work to improve outdoor access. These groups often operate on small budgets and rely on sheer energy, commitment and passion. The Enhanced Access Fund is there to help them achieve their goals.”
Funding will be prioritised towards projects designed to obtain certain and enduring access, such as negotiations to secure access agreements, legal or survey costs, or the cost of obtaining Resource Management Act consents.
Other initiatives such as signage, installation of stiles and other activities that improve existing public access were also eligible, though these funding categories are given lower priority.
Improved outdoor access has a wide and lasting impact on quality of life, and community resilience, Mr Pyle said.
“Better outdoor access helps to bring communities together, helps them thrive, and improves regional economies.”
The first funding round of the Enhanced Access Fund was held in 2010 and since then 83 projects have been awarded funding.
Recent funding recipients include Living Streets Aotearoa, which received funding to assist with the design and installation of signs to mark public access on a track in Karaka Bay, Wellington, and the Rotary Club of Plimmerton, which received a grant to cover the cost of resource consent for the next stage of its Te Ara Piko Pathway project.
At the top of the North Island, Vision Kerikeri received assistance for signs on the new Wairoa Stream Waterfall Track in Kerikeri, while in the South Island, the Nelson Tasman Cycle Trails Trust received a grant to help with survey costs and legal fees to secure easements over private land to help complete Tasman's Great Taste Trail.
Application forms, guidelines and further details about the application process are available on the Enhanced Access Fund page this website.