Otago innovation award for A2O cycle trail

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One of the South Island’s top tourist attractions with strong links through the entire Waitaki district has been recognised with an award at Otago sport’s big night.
The Alps 2 Ocean Cycle Trail received the Innovation in Sport Award at the Otago Sports Awards at the Dunedin Town Hall recently.
Tourism Waitaki chairman Marcus Brown said the organisation was delighted with the award.
“The A2O trail is an outstanding achievement and the award was much appreciated. Tourism Waitaki is indebted to the A2O developers and visionaries who made the concept a reality. It has made a positive economic difference to every community that it passes through . . . in a wholly sustainable way.”The 301km Alps 2 Ocean Cycle Trail, which stretches from Aoraki/Mt Cook to the Oamaru Harbour, has been signposted and rideable for three seasons including this year.
Several sections of the trail are now fully off-road. The most recent off-road section to open was the 28km stretch between Kurow and Duntroon, which was officially opened by Waitaki Mayor Gary Kircher in January.
Only 15km of the trial remains on-road and that section is likely to be off-road by the end of this year. The trial is part of the New Zealand Cycle Trail, a concept proposed by Prime Minister John Key in February 2009.
More than $3.7 million in Government funding has been dedicated to the trial, including a $935,000 grant announced in August 2015 by Mr Key when he visited Oamaru, which allowed the Kurow to Duntroon section to be opened slightly earlier than expected.
As well as Government funding, more than $950,000 was fundraised for the project.