The NZ$510m (£262m) project will provide a vital connection in the region and provide better, safer and more reliable transport options. The contract is designed to create an integrated team including the designer-constructor consortium and Waka Kotahi.
The project will include the construction of a 7km two-lane highway with a separate shared path for pedestrians and cyclists, as well as six bridges, including New Zealand’s first extradosed bridge.
The team has chosen design and construction techniques that are calculated to allow a reduction of up to 20% of carbon emissions compared to traditional designs.
By lowering the entrance to the 550m extradosed bridge the proposed design will better fit with the landscape and enable 235m to be trimmed off the overall length, reducing the amount of steel and concrete required. The crossing was designed with a reduced number of piers in the Wēiti River from three to two to reduce the environmental impact.
The project team has worked on improving the recycling of construction materials, using renewable energy sources, and harvesting rainwater.
The Penlink design was also developed to protect a wide range of flora and fauna through preliminary investigations and continuous environment monitoring will be carried on until completion in late 2026.