June 21, 2019

Erosion works on Port Road commence

The strong advocating by the Seaview Business Association (SBA) todepict the importance of work on the erosion issue on Port Road in Seaview isbeginning to pay off. Following a successful presentation by the SBA in 2015, HuttCity Council (HCC) put aside funding in its Long Term Plan towards a projectaimed at alleviating coastal erosion and enhancing protection along the coastaledge of Port Road.  The project will, oncecompleted, provide approximately 300 metres of interlocking rock revetment whichwill protect the coastal edge from further erosion. The project cost isapproximately $1M and is funded by both HCC & NZTA.

The work has now begun on the southern end of Hutt City Council managedPort Road which is the worst affected section of the road.  Once the existing foreshore edge isre-profiled, new geotextile cloth and the reutilised existing demolition, whichhas been broken up, is laid down. Imported rock from Taihape is bought in andoverlaid to form new rock revetment which is keyed into the foreshore.  The existing path and grass will then bereinstated.

Hutt City Council’s Senior Project Engineer, Simon Cager says the “workbegan in late February of this year and should be completed by the end of Aprilaccording to the contractor’s current programme”.

In 2015 the SBA, HCC and Greater Wellington Regional Council (GWRC) metand agreed to contribute to protecting the Port Road bank from further erosion. The two councils own different sectionsof Port Road. Cager reiterates “to put it simply HCC’s responsibility liessouth of the Waiwhetu stream and GWRC’s north of the stream”.  However, the SBA’s Chairperson Bruce Whiley is“disappointed the GWRC hasn’t committed to a start date for their section ofthe works, despite both councils agreeing back in 2015 to work together on thisproject

This delay of commencement puts pressure on the Hutt City’s assets, suchas gas main and fibre optic cable under the footpath, replacement of Pohutukawatrees, eventually the road and private assets and major industry in this area.This is also a concern from the International Panel on Climate Change wherethey predict that sea levels will rise significantly more than 50cm during thiscentury. Dr Nancy Bertler from GNS confirms that the 2013 storm was a 100 yearevent but with sea levels rising, storms of that severity are likely to beannual.

This emphasises the importance of the GWRC section of Port Road work tobe completed and for all to consider the long term protection to Port Road.