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Rangitāiki Floodway widening work completed

Friday, 26 June 2015 10:00 a.m.

The latest stage in the Bay of Plenty Regional Council’s Rangitāiki Floodway project has been completed.

The Floodway widening work, which was finished in late May, is the latest step in the Council project to reduce flood levels in the main Rangitāiki River, upstream of Edgecumbe to the river mouth. It aims to relieve pressure on stopbanks along the Rangitāiki River and will direct more water down the floodway, decreasing flows down the main river.

“The project’s purpose is to make the Rangitāiki flood protection system more robust,” Council Rivers and Drainage Manager Bruce Crabbe says. “This work will help provide more robust flood protection all the way down to below Thornton.”

There are still five stages to be completed. Future work includes the section below the Matatā-Whakatāne highway, raising the stopbanks from the McLean Rd area to McCracken Rd, constructing a modified spillway to allow water to flow from the main Rangitāiki River into the floodway and designing the stopbanks with flatter slopes to allow farmers to work their land more easily.

Geotechnical strengthening work is undertaken as part of the project works, and fencing will be installed to restrict stock access to waterways.

Options investigations are continuing in conjunction with the design work to explore further improvements to the flood protection system and cater for future climate change effects. Further consultation with the community and affected landowners will be undertaken to discuss these options once they are further advanced.

The Regional Council has worked closely with landowners in the area throughout the project.

“We appreciate the patience and support we’ve received from landowners along the way,” Bruce says.

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work complete on stockbank