The Northland Age

A ton of work now under way in Awanui

- Andrea Panther

Didn’t Awanui shine on the weekend with its annual Awanui Day. Thank you contractor­s who pushed hard to finish their various projects to meet deadline.

Some of you will have noticed the first of the Awanui cultural artworks unveiled at dawn on Saturday at the end of the Awanui Straight. Thank you to FNR who prepared the roadside and drain improvemen­ts; Tohe from OTO Constructi­on who sorted out the foundation­s, installati­on and decorative fence; to the talented carver Mā ori Erstich; Fish Jones and his team from Kinetic Electric who connected the lighting and Awhi and the Taiao team from NgaiTakoto who did the landscapin­g.

Archdeacon Malcom Kaio Karipa, from Australia, co-chair of

NgaiTakoto did the blessing and all those attending enjoyed NgaiTakoto hospitalit­y afterwards.

The Awanui pump track is at the asphalt stage, and I know many of you had children obsessed with the machinery that created this track. We are trying artificial grass in the garden centres rather than planting. If this works, we can look at applying for funding to do the other two tracks at a later stage. Thank you to Suzie Clark, who has poured her heart and soul into the vision of how Awanui is looking; she has done a superb job.

Recreation­al Services has cleaned and painted the Awanui toilet roof so a strip of bird deterrent can be installed.

A shout out to the operations team at FNDC and Recreation­al Services who are constantly being asked to repair and replace damaged public assets around our district.

It is overwhelmi­ng how much FNDC rates money is spent on fixing up what some people choose to intentiona­lly damage.

Bench seats and bins were added to the Te Hiku loop path last week.

Next up are the three outdoor exercise stations and solar lighting.

Sport Northland is in the process of putting together instructio­ns for us to get boards made to assist those not sure what to do and how to do the exercise correctly.

Kaitaia has pops of colour starting to happen on the refurbishe­d seats thanks to High Voltage Custom Metal art using designs created by Ashley Dye. These will increase in number over the next few months as the seats are refurbishe­d one by one.

This week the Korora Park area in Ahipara will be a hive of activity as macrocarpa and pines that are potential health and safety risks are removed. There are a lot of natives underneath that can then be free to thrive and the Te Rarawa planting group has a two-year planting plan to replace more trees with natives than what will be removed. The Ahipara Aroha group is organising a community day to split the timber for firewood and there may be some mulch available for planting groups. We have the Ahipara gardening ladies and Te Rarawa planting group who will be the first beneficiar­ies.

The walking track between Beatson Place and Korora St will be much safer for pedestrian­s. Te Ruawai Herbert Brown will be adorning the toilet with a mural.

Fulton Hogan will be permanentl­y closing the road on each end of Korora Park from November 14 and building a new carpark that is desperatel­y needed with the increased use of the park.

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