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Save The Maitai


Save the Maitai campaigners are taking their ‘keep the valley rural’ message straight to decision makers at the next full council meeting (Tues Sept 22).

The campaign has gathered wide support with over 8000 signatories to the petition against rezoning the Kaka Valley area in the Maitai Valley for development. Two campaigners will speak to Council at the public forum at 9.00am next Tuesday. With the number allowed into the Council Chamber possibly limited by next week’s Covid alert announcement Save the Maitai supporters also intend gathering outside Civic House.

Campaign spokesperson Peter Taylor said the group was heartened at the extraordinary public support to keep the Maitai free of large-scale subdivisions.

“It’s very clear that the majority of Nelsonians treasure the Maitai-Kaka valley as a peaceful area where generations of people have swum in the river, picnicked, played with their children, cycled, walked their dogs and enjoyed many other activities, free from city traffic and noise.”

Taylor said the level of public support indicated that had Council consulted the community more transparently about providing residential housing in the Maitai when it developed the 2019 Future Development Strategy, they would have received similar resounding opposition.

“A development of 500 - 700 new houses in the Maitai-Kaka Valley would inevitably cause air, noise, light and water pollution, especially stormwater runoff into the adjacent Dennes hole, a favourite used by thousands of swimmers each summer,” he said. “We don’t want to see Nelson’s beautiful river valley wrecked – it’s unique as the city’s main fresh-water swimming destination and our closest rural recreational destination.”

Taylor said Nelsonians have not opposed large subdivisions in Atawhai and northern valleys, Marsden Valley, Ngawhatu Valley, nor the Brook, but they have long seen the Maitai as a sacred and spacious area that should be left as it is.

Subdivisions planned for Belview-Atawhai, Toi Toi, and Whakatu in addition to extensive subdivision in Richmond as well as the stated plans for intensification in the city would provide for many years growth he said.

“We’re simply asking Council to keep this unique and special space - our most popular recreational valley - free from urbanisation, for the people of Nelson, like any smart little city would.”

Depending on Covid alert levels, members of the public are invited to join in support outside Civic House on Tuesday September 22 at 8.30am and will hopefully be allowed inside to support the speakers at the Public Forum in the Council Chamber between 9.00am and 9.15am.

© Scoop Media

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