More care need for seawall says resident
‘‘I don’t know if you call that ‘good maintenance’,’’ Ross Duder says.
The Mission Bay resident sticks his arm inside one of several gaping holes in the Tamaki Drive seawall.
He can fit his entire limb – from fingertip to collar bone – inside one hole located along the Okahu Bay section of the seawall.
The 7.5-kilometre wall stretches from Mechanics Bay to St Heliers and is filled with boulders and rocks that prop up the busy seaside route.
Duder is a member of the Tamaki Drive Preservation Society and has become concerned at the lack of care given to the seawall.
The seawall was built in the late 1920s and Tamaki Drive was laid on top of it in the early 1930s.
Duder took the
Auckland City Harbour News for a tour of the seawall, highlighting some of the most damaged spots. There are a handful of prominent holes between Mechanics and Okahu bays, where boulders have degraded or been washed away. The missing boulders reveal the seawall’s hollowness. Some sections of Tamaki Drive’s footpath are sagging into the seawall. Two potholes are visible along a five-metre section of the boardwalk. Grouting is loose and missing in some places. Driftwood and rub- bish has been washed into one of the holes.
Duder says he is disappointed at the lack of maintenance.
It’s important infrastructure, he says. Giving the seawall heritage status may ensure it is better looked after, he believes.
And it’s not just Duder who is disappointed.
‘‘It’s really hard to agree the stone wall is wellmaintained with huge chunks missing,’’ Desley Simpson says.
The Orakei Local Board chairwoman says the community has been let down by Auckland Transport’s lack of care.
‘‘It’s just a shame they can’t do one job and do it properly.’’
Auckland Transport says the wall is actually in good condition.
‘‘The wall is sound, however there is some tidying up to do after some storms and this year has been no exception – but the work is superficial,’’ spokesman Dai Bindoff says.
‘‘It doesn’t need replacement and so no estimates have been made.’’
The seawall is maintained on an ongoing basis, Auckland Transport says.
A section of the wall at Okahu Bay was re-grouted and protective boulders at the base of the wall were realigned last year. ‘‘Based on the wall’s current condition, with on-going inspections and subsequent maintenance, the wall is expected to last well into the future.’’
The seawall’s structure is reviewed every two years.
All sea walls are at risk in any seismic event, Auckland Transport says, and a seismic screening of the seawall is under way.
The results are expected in the next three months.
Care needed: Mission Bay resident Ross Duder says the Tamaki Dr seawall needs more care from its owners, Auckland Transport.