28 April 2020

Works to repair and replace the rock armouring around the Ōpōtiki Wharf are set to start this week, before the wetter winter months risk damaging the town’s vital flood protection structures. 

Bay of Plenty Regional Council’s Rivers and Drainage Operations Manager, Bruce Crabbe, said the works were likely to be completed by mid-May assuming the weather and COVID-19 rules allowed. 

“The area near the wharf was damaged during the floods in 2019 and because they are so important to the town’s flood protection, we need to get these essential works underway before the wetter winter months risk exacerbating the issue. 

“Given the nature of the works and the ability for workers to keep an appropriate distance, contactors will be working in line with national COVID-19 guidelines for social distancing,” Mr Crabbe said. 

Local residents are asked to avoid the area and particularly keep an eye out for truck and machinery movement around the wharf carpark and surrounding streets. 

“The wharf, the boat ramp, the carpark and some of the surrounding areas will be fenced off and closed to the public while the works are being carried out. That includes the river-edge playground as well, although with current COVID-19 restrictions in place, we don’t expect that to be an issue. 

“We just ask that people out and about in the area take extra care for the coming couple of weeks and the contractors will be extra vigilant as well,” Mr Crabbe said.  

On completion, reinstatement works will tidy the area and it will be returned to normal access and use. 

Frequently asked questions

  1. How much rock will be used?
    Approximately 1000 tonnes of rock will be used on this site. 

  2. What is the budget for the works?
    Estimated cost is $150,000. 

  3. Can the Coastguard still access their building and launch in an emergency?
    Yes – the Coastguard are aware of the works and will still be able to use facilities in an emergency. 

  4. Is the river-edge playground still open? 
    No – until all the rock has been placed and the area has been re-established, there will be no public access to the playground, wharf, boat ramp, carpark, walkway, or wharf fishing spots. 

  5. Is this part of the Ōpōtiki Harbour works? 
    No. This work is not part of Ōpōtiki District Council’s Harbour Development Programme. You can find out more information on that programme and any works that may impact the current wharf on the Ōpōtiki District Council website.

  6. When will the works be completed? 
    We expect works to take around three weeks. Weather and COVID-19 response depending, we expect to start works in the last week of April. We expect to be finished by the middle of May. 

  7. Will it look the same at the end?
    The stopbank area will look largely the same when works are complete – there will be more visible rock and there may be some areas where grass needs time to regrow. We will also make sure any damage to the carpark surface where our machinery was operating is repaired. There will be no change to the boat ramp area.
  8. Who is the contractor?
    Most works will be carried out by local earthmovers Wilson Bros.