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Riverside reserve proposed beside Motueka bridge

April 10th, 2013
[by David Armstrong]

A riverside reserve near the northern end of the Motueka River bridge, similar to the one beside the Appleby bridge over Waimea River, was proposed at yesterday's Community Board meeting.

Chairman David Ogilvie said various residents over time had asked for better river access points for recreational users, and this was the most obvious place to start.

"There is a picnic/swimming recreational area on the northern (Motueka) side of the Appleby Bridge. Could something similar be developed for Motueka?

"It would probably be on the Riwaka side of the State Highway 60 bridge, with improved access, grassed areas, picnic tables, BBQ and toilets. For many, apart from fishing fanatics, the river is an under-developed and under-utilised asset. Is it not time to address the issue?"

The Board supported the idea, but resolved first to ask Council to report on the ownership of the land on the upstream side of the bridge, outside the stopbank.

The Krammer Bach at Tapu Bay
John Krammer presented a petition to the meeting asking for the retention of an historic bach at the far eastern end of Tapu Bay, which is threatened with removal. The petition had been signed by most of the best-known names in the Motueka area.

John said the building, which used to be known as the "fisherman's crib", was built in the late 1890s and moved to its current location around 1936. He wants it to be given Heritage status.

His presentation followed a written account by Bett Collins of her childhood when her family spent a great deal of time in the bach, which was built by her grandparents.

Motueka and Tasman District water
The Board heard an encouraging and detailed report from Council's hydrologist, Joseph Thomas, which allayed any fears that Motueka's water is still of very good quality. Sampling takes place at a surprisingly large number of locations in and around town at regular intervals, and showed that levels of nitrates and other issues for public health are very low.

Later in the meeting discussion centred on water supplies for Mapua and Richmond, and the prospects of both the Lees Valley dam and coastal pipeline being constructed.

Prompted by comments from Board member Paul Hawkes, Council's CEO Lindsay McKenzie told the meeting that funding constraints meant that it was "unlikely" that both projects could be afforded.

He said that of the two the Lees Valley dam would "probably get the nod", but that there were "lots of balls in the air" on these and related projects including water extraction in the Waimea plains.

Library project working party
The Council's new Corporate Services manager Mike Drummond said he wants the working party, to be set up to examine and plan the Motueka Library development project, to start work as soon as possible rather than wait until the new financial year, and preferably by the end of April.

The work will be funded from Motueka Reserves Financial Contributions rather than from rates funding, so does not need to await the completion of the annual plan. Waiting a further three months would be a waste of time, Mike said.

Magnolia Motueka?
At the public forum, Anna Louise made the suggestion that trees planted in Motueka should be magnolias and make the town known for its magnolias. She suggested that these trees, which grow well here, would be ideal for the town.

Also at the public forum, Arthur Walker asked how often if at all the three Motueka Ward councillors met to discuss Motueka issues, and urged that they vote in bloc at Council meetings on such issues.


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