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KCDC and Transit working on flood solution

January 13, 2005

KCDC and Transit working on flood solution

The Kapiti Coast District Council and Transit New Zealand have stepped up efforts to develop a permanent and effective solution to the flooding problems around Paekakariki.

The Council’s chief executive, Mark Dacombe said the Council and Transit have been working together for some time to develop a solution but the flood events of the last 10 days which closed State Highway 1 and threatened the village of Paekakariki, have focused more urgent attention on the problems.
Council staff and consultants met this week with Transit New Zealand staff to review a range of plans to address the issues.

“The main problem is the very large volume of gravel that is being released from high in the hills behind Paekakariki,” Transit’s regional asset manager, Kevin Locke said. .

“The material is very unstable and this, coupled with the extreme weather experienced over the last year, results in large quantities of gravel being washed down creeks blocking culverts and causing flooding when there’s heavy rain.”

“Any solution to address the problem,” Mr Dacombe said, “requires the gravel release to be managed and culverts to be designed so the water escapes without being impeded. The gravel can either be managed in place in the hills or it can be managed in the lower reaches of the streams.

“The preferred solution is to trap and extract the gravel where it is, leaving only water to be managed in the lower reaches. That will have the least impact on property owners at lower levels. This solution is technically possible but it requires resource consents for gravel extraction, the construction of holding structures and roading to provide access, particularly into what’s known as Fly-by-Wire Gully,” Mr Dacombe said.

“Two resource consent applications were lodged this week for consent to enable extraction of gravel from two locations, Te Puke Stream and from part way up the Paekakariki Hill Road.

“A third resource consent application, affecting the area that feeds the stream alongside the Paekakariki Motel, is more complex. Work is well advanced on its preparation and it is expected it will be ready to lodge in two to three weeks.

“We need to confirm that extraction of the gravel in the upper levels is practicable before design work on culverts at the lower levels can be completed.”

Transit New Zealand and the Council are committed to resolving this issue and are working together to ensure that the necessary protection for the town and the State Highway is in place in the shortest practicable time.

ENDS


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