Peacocke Transport & Services

Hamilton City Council’s largest-ever strategic infrastructure project, Peacocke Development (Waikato River Bridge & Whatukooruru Drive), largely centred around the delivery of the new Waikato River bridge and completion of the arterial transport network.

PWRB last deck pour March 2023 CHALLENGE

Construction of the Peacocke Whatukooruru Bridge


Peacocke Waikato River Bridge – proposed bridge position


Aerial view of the bridge location looking south into future Peacocke Development


Existing beach near Peacocke Waikato River Bridge location, showing opportunity to enhance community connectivity with the Waikato River


View downstream from Peacocke Waikato River Bridge location (pre-construction) – looking west from water level


Aerial view pre-construction of Peacocke Waikato River Bridge location - elevated view looking towards the west


3d illustration showing final design of the Peacocke Waikato River Bridge and associated pedestrian/cycle bridge

The challenge

Urban residential development of a 720 ha Peacocke growth area in Hamilton south, to provide for around 20,000 new Hamilton City residents. With support from the Government and Waka Kotahi (NZ Transport Agency), Hamilton City Council (HCC) committed to invest approximately NZ$330M in strategic transport (the Peacocke Strategic Transport Project), and service connections to enable development.

The Council’s bold vision for the area was to enable the development of an attractive and sustainable community in Peacocke. With funding to provide lead infrastructure development (rather than playing catch up), an extraordinary opportunity presented itself to influence land use and transport. 

In 2018, BBO was engaged by Hamilton City Council to meet this challenge head-on and  deliver legacy infrastructure outputs that would set the benchmark for delivery within the Peacocke area. Optioneering resulted in additional project elements being included within the scope (definitely the right decision), all of which were still delivered within the overall programme.

Perhaps the greatest hurdle to enabling the Peacocke Development to ever progress, was resolving the need for a new Waikato River crossing – what would then form the northern gateway into the Peacocke Development. Project objectives for the Waikato River Bridge called for a solution that provided a landmark structure, and which minimised adverse effects, offered a value for money solution (within funding limitations), delivered within programme, and with buy-in from stakeholders. Not all of the objectives were entirely compatible and there was a risk that the resultant trade-off would compromise the optioneering process. As a result, BBO developed a comprehensive multi-criteria assessment framework that presented compelling, transparent, and easy-to-understand evidence of the trade-offs between options. This enabled easy decision-making and resulted in widespread support for the proposed solution.

The outcome

BBO delivered the detailed design and procured the construction contract for Hamilton City Council’s single largest ever new infrastructure contract ((in combination) approximately $250M construction value).

This was achieved no less than three months ahead of programme, while responding positively to every challenge encountered. Despite a project scope that was significantly changed/increased, and a procurement programme undertaken during extreme circumstances (i.e., during the NZ Government imposed Covid-19 lock-down conditions), the construction estimate for the works has been within the allocated budget.

The Peacocke Strategic Transport project largely centred around the new bridge over Waikato River – a landmark structure that also transports utility services across the river, and provides a pedestrian/cycle bridge over Wairere Drive on the north bank of the river. In addition, the continuation of the new arterial network (Peacocke Whatukooruru Drive) required bespoke (and carefully planned) designs to cross some of Hamilton’s most sensitive (and ecologically important) gully systems.

Roading infrastructure included an extension of the Hamilton Ring Road (a major arterial route) into the development area, and extensive urban upgrade to the existing roads with provision of all new utility services. Again, major intersections were designed to safely serve demand from all transport users, with particular focus on providing effective solutions for walking, cycling, and public transport. The result means someone living in Peacocke will have the opportunity to walk/cycle from their home to the CBD without needing to cross a road.

Large-scale stormwater treatment devices were designed to cater for ultimate future urban development needs, stylised with novel naturalised treatments for outfalls into the Waikato River.  Local water services have been provided throughout, including large-scale strategic services for future demands of the entire Peacocke Development (wastewater to Pukete), and resilience needs for Hamilton City water supplies (strategic supply line over Waikato River).

BBO took a collaborative approach in engaging with numerous project teams, and led the charge for professional service contracts relating to the Peacocke Development which required the development of multiple systems, processes, and reports to suit the unique requirements of the project. In the interests of “best-for-project”, documents were shared freely with other consultants.

In the words of Andrew Parsons, Hamilton City Council’s Strategic Development Manager:

Just a note from me to say thank you for the huge effort you’ve all put in (and your individual teams) to get us to where we are today in the Peacocke programme……..this result is due to your dedication, focus and drive to achieve this. For me, it’s a privilege to be part of your great team that’s delivering a future Hamilton community…….”

The outcome is a product that has set the standard for future urban development within the Peacocke Development area. The Peacocke Waikato River Bridge is a unique and memorable landmark structure, with a high aesthetic value, and cultural symbolism representative of the area. The structural form of the Waikato River Bridge (with a large steel lattice central pier), is a unique solution; an arrangement that has never been designed or constructed in New Zealand before. The transport network has the community at its heart – it focuses on all modes of transport, providing a safe, efficient, and effective network, with a strong emphasis on active modes (walking and cycling) and public transport. It blends with community initiatives with the use of active play areas, pocket parks, community gardens, and walkways integrated within landscaped wetlands and stormwater ponds. BBO are proud to have worked with Hamilton City to successfully realise its vision for an attractive and sustainable community in Peacocke.