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Major programme considered to rebuild more beaches

MEDIA RELEASE

12 April 2004

Major programme considered to rebuild more beaches

Auckland City is considering rebuilding up to eight beaches on its two harbours.

The idea for more sand on Auckland beaches received strong support yesterday from members of the council’s Transport Committee.

A preliminary report says eight beaches at Pt England Reserve, Pt Chevalier, Herne Bay, Home Bay, Sentinel Reserve, St Heliers, Blockhouse Bay and Taylor’s Reserve are suitable for the work.

“Replenishing the sand on these beaches would be good news for Aucklanders,” says the chairperson of the Transport Committee, Councillor Greg McKeown. “Our isthmus beaches are great recreational spaces and should be improved as much as possible to allow people’s full enjoyment of them. Aucklanders young and old love the beach, we’re lucky to have them on our doorstep.”

Sand is already being pumped onto Kohimarama beach. The need for urgent work to protect the sea wall at Kohimarama was identified in October 2002 and sand replenishment was selected as a solution. The current report identifies St Heliers as a priority for similar reasons.

Investigation into the potential benefits from sand replenishment for the city’s other beaches has subsequently become part of a citywide coastal management strategy being prepared by the council’s City Planning group.

A progress report, from Urban Solutions, was presented at Auckland City Council’s Transport Committee.

Mr McKeown says there is a combination of roading, stormwater, engineering and recreational issues involved. The committee has now referred the report to the council’s Combined Committees’ June meeting.

Urban Solutions says the eight beaches it has identified fit criteria, including recreational use, infrastructure concerns and popularity, being used to gauge which beaches would benefit from the replenishment programme.

Urban Solutions estimates the programme will cost about $5 million.

Mr McKeown says this is a preliminary figure covering sanding, and there would be other design and related engineering costs, like stormwater improvements.

Ends

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