Kapiti hazard lines removed from reports

KAY BLUNDELL
Last updated 13:38 17/12/2013

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Kapiti Coast District Council has bowed to public pressure and is removing controversial 50 and 100 year hazard lines from the LIM reports of about 1800 properties.

The council has also signalled it will be relaxing its building consent processes related to properties in natural hazard zones to be less restrictive.

There was a public outcry when the council announced new 50 and 100-year predicted shorelines last year and placed them on LIMs. Property owners feared their valuations and insurance were affected.

Kapiti Mayor Ross Church said the removal of the projected shoreline maps and lines would be a relief to coastal property owners.

''We accept these lines on LIMs have not been well received and in response to new scientific information, and with the new wording on LIMs, we will be removing them. Prospective purchasers will instead be directed to our website to review the detailed information council holds, including projected shoreline maps.

In response to opposition, the council brought a panel of world-renowned coastal experts to Kapiti to review the science it had been relying on, prepared by Coastal Systems, known as the Shand report.

Residents were given the opportunity to table scientific reports from two experts challenging the council information. 

In future any LIM requests for properties will refer to the two new reports from Dr Willem de Lange and Mr Angus Gordon, as well as the Shand report.

''We have listened and will continue to listen," Mr Church said.

The new information refers to the new scientific reports challenging the extent, or even existence, of erosion on some parts of the coastline.

Coastal Ratepayers United lead the battle against the hazard lines and chairman Christopher Ruthe said,'' we consider there is no scientific basis for any information to be on LIMs as there is no agreement amongst experts as to what it a hazard. 

''However the council has moved in the right direction by substantially modifying the LIM infomation.''

CRU secretary Salima Padamsey said it had been a long battle.

''It has ruined people's lives over the past year. We have been fighting them. It has been a very difficult process and it has been very unfair until now,'' Ms Padamsey said. 

Affected property owners will receive a letter this week informing them of the changes. 

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- The Dominion Post

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