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Great Walks At A Standstill Following Traffic Report

The MWH Traffic Report that has been awaited for some considerable time was released today - the actual Report is inaccessible off the Website - a not uncommon occurrence as you will be aware. I will post the link here when it becomes available.

The presser does itself make clear that there are now several delays in place while additional work is completed. In fact, it appears though this is not made clear in the presser that nothing further can be done until further traffic studies are done over the Christmas period. This will I am sure please the Hahei Ratepayers and Stakeholders Association - note the sudden acceptance of the role of the Ratepayers as part of the Stakeholdes Group - a good move!

But the four "stand-alone projects" that were approved back on 16 September:

  1.  Safety signage and planting around the Blowhole                                                                        
  2.  Andlinger/McCanns Bay Cathedral Cove Extension                                                                   
  3.  Stella Evered track construction (subject to resource consent)                                                
  4. Hereheretaura Pa Track reconfiguration.

appear to have been reduced to two, and even they appear to have been modified:

  1. Works at the Stella Evered Reserve including fencing and tree removal continues.
  2. A management agreement allowing for tree planting of the native plants on Te Pupuhua Recreation reserve was signed between ourselves and DOC specifically for the tree planting. This allows for 3000 native coastal trees to now be brought in for boundary planting at an area south of Te Pare historic reserve and Te Pupuhua Reserve. This planting is to suppress gorse growth and help to define boundaries between private land and public reserve. The land has been prepared for planting and crystal rain will be applied to the plants to make best use of the spring conditions and take hold before summer.  We continue to have on-going communication with landowners in relation to screen planting.

This is interesting when taken in conjunction with the final two paras of the presser:

“The Committee endorsed staff to prepare a report on the Governance Structure for the Coromandel Great Walks (as it applies across the district) and Terms of Reference for Council to endorse.  This is anticipated to be presented at the Council meeting in December. (my bold!)

Meanwhile building consents for the viewing platforms that are being proposed along the first stage of the Walk route have come through with confirmation that the plans for the platforms comply. However we have put any further work on these on hold until after the next Governance Group meeting. Therefore there will be no further progress on constructing the platforms for some time.”

What this tells us is that there has been a “high-level” rethink taking place, and a great deal more circumspect consideration of local concerns that staff have tended to have ‘rail-roaded' in the past. It is to be hoped that this represents a major re-think about project administration generally, and a return to full consultation so long absent from the manner in which our Council has operated.

The proposed extension of the Governance Structure for the Coromandel Greta Walks, "AS IT APPLIES ACROSS THE WHOLE DISTRICT" (my caps), is to be considered by the December Council meeting. This is interesting if only for the manner in which they may propose to deal with Tangata Whenua interests. Perhaps the implications of the Co-governance arrangements are beginning to dawn of certain people who shall go un-named, and the tight little Council (Leach/Page) gerrymander proposed earlier come in for some criticism.

All in all, a most interesting presser – the full transcript of the MWH Report will be even more interesting.




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