De­vi­a­tion de­ci­sion still a month away

Kaikoura Star - - YOUR LOCAL NEWS - PIPPA BROWN

A fi­nal de­ci­sion on con­tro­ver­sial plans to move the high­way through Kaiko¯ura could be an­other month away.

New Zealand Trans­port Agency project man­ager Mike Blyleven said more con­sul­ta­tion would take place over the next month, with a de­ci­sion on the pro­posed Kaiko¯ura State High­way 1 de­vi­a­tion likely at the end of Oc­to­ber.

NZTA would con­tinue to en­gage with iwi, af­fected par­ties and the Kaiko¯ura Dis­trict Coun­cil to help with the fi­nal de­ci­sion, he said.

The Kaiko¯ura Dis­trict Coun­cil and NZTA re­leased a pro­posal to de­vi­ate SH1 to im­prove safety and man­age traf­fic flows around the busy in­ter­sec­tion with Lud­stone Rd and West End, and Whale­way Sta­tion Rd.

Fol­low­ing a re­view of pos­si­ble so­lu­tions and dis­cus­sions, NZTA and the coun­cil rec­om­mended a 500-me­tre de­vi­a­tion along Lyell Creek to join Beach Rd op­po­site Kaiko¯ura Top 10 Hol­i­day Park.

Many af­fected busi­ness own­ers and res­i­dents were an­gry plans to change the route of SH1 was re­leased in July be­fore they were con­sulted.

They were fur­ther ag­grieved when an Opus sur­vey­ing team and Spray Marks Traf­fic work­ers were spot­ted work­ing on the in­ter­sec­tion at SH1, Lud­stone Rd and West End and fur­ther along op­po­site the Kaiko¯ura Top 10 Hol­i­day Park.

They said the Kaiko¯ura De­vi­a­tion was a ‘‘done deal’’ be­cause the sur­vey work had been car­ried out a week be­fore the sub­mis­sion dead­line on Au­gust 25.

At a Kaiko¯ura Dis­trict Coun­cil meet­ing on Au­gust 23, 12 res­i­dents con­fronted coun­cil­lors, up­set the coun­cil was not tak­ing re­spon­si­bil­ity, say­ing it needed to ad­vo­cate for the com­mu­nity.

Blyleven said NZTA ac­knowl­edged many peo­ple were crit­i­cal of the lim­ited time­frame for the con­sul­ta­tion at a stress­ful time for Kaiko¯ura.

‘‘The Trans­port Agency apol­o­gises for this but given the Gov­ern­ment’s pro­vi­sion of $231 mil­lion for en­hance­ment work through Kaiko¯ura and along State High­way 1, we needed to seek the views of the com­mu­nity ur­gently to con­sider this pro­posal along­side the other earthquake restora­tion work be­ing un­der­taken along the coastal route.’’

More than 160 sub­mis­sions were re­ceived by the clos­ing date on Au­gust 25.

NZTA was as­sess­ing feed­back raised from the the sub­mis­sions, in­clud­ing al­ter­na­tive op­tions and sug­ges­tions to im­prove the pro­posal and NZTA was pleased with the re­sponses and the wide rang­ing views of­fered, Blyleven said.

While slightly more peo­ple op­posed the re­align­ment pro­posal than sup­ported it in part or full, the ma­jor­ity agreed the pro­posal would pro­vide safer ac­cess for ev­ery­one.

A num­ber of peo­ple were con­cerned about the num­ber of trucks that were trav­el­ling along Beach Rd, and sug­gested that a by­pass of Kaiko¯ura should be built in­stead.

Oth­ers were con­cerned about the prop­er­ties that would be af­fected by the new road de­vi­a­tion, the pos­si­ble im­pact on other busi­nesses and the changes in lo­cal road con­nec­tiv­ity, he said.

PHOTO: PIPPA BROWN/STUFF

The pro­posed de­vi­a­tion of SH1 would go straight though this home and busi­ness on Lud­stone Rd.

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