Belinda was in the right place at the right time on Friday for a quick preview tour of the new mangrove walk, thanks to representatives from Queen’s Wharf Brisbane and Multiplex. (This is the section of riverfront on the north bank of the Brisbane River from the Goodwill Bridge, upstream to Margaret St).
First, the news everyone is waiting for: the Bicentennial Bikeway through this section is set to reopen after Riverfire. After construction is completed, there is a month required for commissioning and sign-off – which includes things like testing the camera security (this area will be linked to South Bank and Queensland Police Service security). So, when it looks tantalisingly complete but not yet open, that’s what’s going on.
- the bikeway through this section will be asphalt (but concrete at the ends where there will be different textured surfaces where the paths cross). The bikeway will be 3m wide, painted (green and not slippery!) to distinguish it from the 2m wide footpath.
- the bike side will be closest to the Expressway, with footpath on the river side. Belinda raised the issue of shade, pointing out that pedestrians naturally prefer to walk on the shaded side of the path. There have been additional trees planted along the river side, so when they grow that will be the shady side.
- bikes probably won’t be banned on the mangrove walk, but will be discouraged. That’s intended to be a pedestrian path, and certainly wouldn’t be the preferred route for commuters.
- the large structure at the corner you can see from the Goodwill Bridge will be a cafe, and is expected to open at the same time as the rest of the structure. It will have toilets!
- the sharp corner under the expressway at the “Caution” wall is no more. We couldn’t get close enough for a good look due to work in the area, but the path curves around in a much more gentle s-bend with a good line of sight.
- the mangroves that were very harshly chopped recently at the upstream end were apparently “trimmed” and expected to re-grow – although there will be a platform built out over the section we pictured recently, so obviously those can only grow back at a low height.
- (unlike at Howard Smith Wharves) there will be no gravel left exposed in the making of this bikeway.