Mangaweka Bridge Ground Breaking Ceremony September 17, 2020 Listen Cold weather and rain did not dampen the spirits of those who attended the Ground Breaking ceremony of the new Mangaweka Bridge. A karakia and blessing by local iwi Ngāti Hauiti began proceedings for the new bridge that will cross the Rangitīkei river connecting the Rangitīkei District to Manawatū. Rangitīkei District Mayor Andy Watson and Manawatū District Mayor Helen Worboys together dug the first sod marking the beginning of construction. Both mayors spoke, acknowledging local iwi, the community, council staff and all those involved in working towards the new bridge. The new structure will be a vital link between both districts, offering greater tourism and economic benefits. The existing Mangaweka bridge was built in 1904 and was going to be demolished after the new bridge was opened. However, there was a strong push to keep the historic bridge and both Councils have agreed to keep the bridge for pedestrians and cyclists to use. On-going maintenance of the old bridge will be funded by the Mangaweka Heritage Trust. The new bridge is aimed to be completed in 2021.