Local Govt | National News Video | Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Search


Bridge cleaning at last

Ōpōtiki District Council was pleased to hear the New Zealand Transport Agency’s announcement that the Waioeka Bridge was to be cleaned in the coming months after almost three years of raising the matter on behalf of the community.

Aileen Lawrie, Council’s Chief Executive said that it had been a long time coming but it was a win for the Ōpōtiki community.

Ms Lawrie said that often getting matters through central government processes was ‘time-heavy’ as the nature of spending public money required proposals, budgets and contracts, all of which added up to long lead times.

“We have been told for years that because the issues aren’t structural, that cleaning wasn’t a priority and I can appreciate their point of view on that – the utmost care needs to be taken with public funds. But as many in the community have pointed out, it is hard to imagine a bridge in Auckland allowed to reach that state without uproar. It is the gateway to our town and the first thing people see. So everyone here is thrilled to see this get across the line so we really appreciate NZTA listening to the community and finding funding for this work,” Ms Lawrie said.

Previous reports suggest that cleaning costs were close to $500,000 reflecting the nature of the traffic management challenges, scaffolding for health and safety purposes and consent issues surrounding the run-off of hydro-carbons and paint into the river below.

“It is important to acknowledge Ari Erickson’s role in putting forward a solution that both protected the environment and reduced the cost. Ari is our Engineering and Services Group Manager and he outlined a concept for a custom-built cradle that would move along the side of the structure as each section is cleaned. NZTA has since taken the idea on board and is developing it further alongside Regional Council. It looks like the sort of innovative thinking they may be able to roll out elsewhere. It is great to think that we may have found a solution for a local problem that the rest of New Zealand may benefit from,” Ms Lawrie said.

NZTA advises that the bridge is to be cleaned before the end of the calendar year.


© Scoop Media

Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Ellen Rykers on The Dig: Community Conservation – The Solution To The Biodiversity Crisis?

There are backyard trapping networks doing their bit for Predator Free 2050, farmers planting native trees along their waterways, and iwi protecting whenua rāhui. There are 62 biodiversity sanctuaries across 56,000 hectares, with around two-thirds of them community-led. There are citizen scientists counting birds in their backyards and landowners conserving habitat in 3,500 Queen Elizabeth II National Trust covenants.

It’s increasingly clear that a government agency alone cannot combat the biodiversity crisis successfully. These grass-roots initiatives are a growing resource in the conservation toolbox. More>>

Closing This Weekend! Have Your Say On The Issues For NZ's New Biodiversity Strategy

Scoop and PEP invite you to help decide how we should protect and restore our biodiversity over the next 50 years using Scoop’s online engagement platform, HiveMind. HAVE YOUR SAY HERE>>

Biodiversity HiveMind Preliminary Progress Report
Open data report summarising preliminary findings of the Biodiversity HiveMind. Read Progress Report Here>>


PM In Japan: Jacinda Ardern’s Remarks Following Abe Summit

Today we discussed a wide range of topics. Broadly the themes were: a deeper, high-value trade and investment relationship, greater cooperation in the Pacific; and strengthening our security partnership. More>>


Replacing All But Chair: Twyford Appoints Five NZTA Board Members

Transport Minister Phil Twyford today announced the appointment of five new members to the NZ Transport Agency Board... There remain two vacancies on the NZTA Board which will be filled in due course. More>>


Climate Change: Adaptation And Risk Assessment Framework Released

“We are already experiencing the effects of a changing climate such as coastal inundation and increasingly frequent and severe droughts, floods, fires and storms. This framework is an acknowledgement that we must start adapting”, James Shaw said today. More>>


Ihumātao: Mana Whenua Reach Decision On Land

Māori King Tūheitia says mana whenua have finally reached consensus over what to do with Ihumātao - they want it back. More>>


PM To Japan, New York: Ardern To Meet Trump During UN Trip

“I’m looking forward to discussing a wide range of international and regional issues with President Trump, including our cooperation in the Pacific and the trade relationship between our countries." More>>

PM's Post-Cab: "A Way Forward"

At Monday's post-cabinet press conference, Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern announced a number of actions in response to the Labour Party's mishandling of sexual assault complaints. More>>


Gordon Campbell: On Allegations Of Left Wing Media Bias

“Left wing bias” accusations date back at least to the mid 1990s... The charge of left wing bias was ridiculous then, and is ridiculous now. More>>

Next Wave Of Reforms: Gun Registration And Licensing Changes Announced

“The Bill includes a register to track firearms and new offences and penalties that can be applied extraterritorially for illegal manufacture, trafficking, and for falsifying, removing, or altering markings – which are a new requirement under the Firearms Protocol.” More>>





InfoPages News Channels