Stream reroute sought for surf club

NICOLE PRYOR
Last updated 05:00 14/11/2012
Karekare beach
Corinne Aitken
PLACE OF BEAUTY: Karekare beach.

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Auckland Council is being asked for permission to reroute a stream so a surf club can continue to get access to the beach.

Access to Titirangi's Karekare beach is being restricted by the Karekare stream, which overflows into a lagoon.

Sand has built up on the beach, which attracts between 70,000 to 90,000 visitors a year, and restricts the flow of water from the stream.

According to the council's principal ranger Stephen Bell, this makes access to the beach and Surf Club "all but impossible."

It is a problem that has been occurring for the last three decades, and though the council looked to solve the problem last year, it was resolved naturally.

Two years ago, Surf Club members and others in the community hand dug a trench between the lagoon and the sea - but because of opposition, the trench was refilled shortly after.

"Council needs to have an agreed plan of how to manage the situation when it occurs, in order to ensure the Club's members can deliver life saving services, and locals and visitors can still access the beach for recreational purposes," Bell said in a report to the council's Parks Recreation and Heritage Forum.

"The option council is being asked to consider is mechanically realigning the Karekare stream mouth to assist the discharge of the stream and lower the water level."

He said this would be a short term solution for the next five years.

Several groups are getting behind the stream reroute, such as Karekare Residents and Ratepayers, the Waitakere Ranges Local Board, MP for Waitakere Paula Bennett, and Surf Life Saving New Zealand.

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