Smaller, $10m groyne, seen as answer to Haumoana worries

TRACEY CHATTERTON
Last updated 05:00 05/06/2014

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Residents living on an eroding coast believe they've found a way to restart a stalled project to save their homes from the encroaching sea.

Walking on Water chairwoman Anne Redstone told the Hastings District Council during annual plan submissions yesterday that the residents' group had cut the cost of an $18 million groyne field to $10m.

The council shelved the idea in 2012 because it was not economically viable to protect the 21 Haumoana homes sitting on the eroding coast.

Recent reports stating there was not enough shingle in the region's rivers to bolster the coastline also threatened the viability of the project. About 730,000 cubic metres of shingle would be needed over 35 years.

Redstone asked the council to consider the new proposal from Walking on Water.

By reworking the design to include a smaller groyne and less shingle it had cut the cost to $10m. Stage one could be completed for just $4.6m, Redstone told councillors.

The new design had a 35-year lifespan which could be modified at a later date to protect the community from sea rises.

The group had also found multiple sources of shingle along the Ngaruroro River which would be cheaper to source than getting shingle from central Hawke's Bay.

Redstone acknowledged climate change reports had "changed the playing field" and that a whole-coast approach was now preferred.

Hastings is working with Napier and the regional council to develop a regional strategy. However, it could take three years to develop the coastal policy.

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- The Dominion Post

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