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Stopbank guidelines a first for NZ

Friday, 13 February 2015 10:00 a.m.

Bay of Plenty Regional Council has published a Stopbank Design and Construction Guidelines document that is understood to be a first for New Zealand.

The guidelines aim to provide guidance to existing and potential stopbank owners on how to build, own and maintain reliable structures. The document includes advice on vital points to consider, from the planning stages to describing emergency flood barrier options.

Published in November last year, the document builds on the extensive stopbank work Bay of Plenty Regional Council has done in the past. It took about eight months to compile and was very much a joint effort, Bay of Plenty Regional Council Engineering Manager David Boothway says.

“Council worked with other regional councils around the country, making extensive use of local knowledge, international best practices and the expertise of geotechnical and design engineers to consolidate guidelines in this document.”

Currently, stopbanks are the Council’s number one river asset management solution. There are 352km of stopbanks in the Bay of Plenty. Surveys are undertaken every 2-5 years to check all stopbanks are meeting agreed levels of service.

Bay of Plenty Regional Council also runs a River Scheme Sustainability project, which considers 100-year catchment-wide flood mitigation solutions and works to ensure flood protection is affordable and sustainable - environmentally and economically - in the long term. It also aims to raise awareness and change attitudes and behaviour around sustainable land use in Bay of Plenty communities.

The Stopbank Design and Construction Guidelines are available on the Bay of Plenty Regional Council website.