Community delighted at land purchase

SALLY KIDSON
Last updated 13:00 13/07/2012

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A public reserve at the Dominion Flats near Mapua is a step closer after the Tasman District Council agreed to buy a 2.8-hectare block of land to gift to the community.

Council engineering manager Trevor Norriss said the council agreed to purchase the land from the NZ Transport Agency at a community services meeting yesterday.

"I think it's a very positive outcome.

"It's been several years in the negotiations, but it's a good outcome."

The land is at the intersection of Mapua Dr and the Ruby Bay Bypass. The purchase still has to go through the legal process, including finalising a price, but it will enable a group of residents in the area to apply to a fund to help them restore and replant the area.

Council communications manager Chris Choat said the parcel of land would become an integral part of the ongoing development of Tasman's Great Taste Trail.

The land has been identified by the Nelson Tasman Cycle Trust as a preferable route for the trail, as it has a gentle gradient that will comply with established parameters for the National Cycle Trail.

Funding for the purchase will come from money already identified for the purchase of reserve land in the Council's Long Term Plan.

The Mapua community has agreed, as part of the purchase agreement, to manage the development and maintain the finished park as an integral feature of the entrance to the Mapua and Ruby Bay settlements.

Elspeth Collier, who lives in the area, said NZTA had offered another block of land to the Department of Conservation, which would complete the reserve.

She said it had been a tricky four-year negotiation for the council to get the land, and residents were rapt.

"Hopefully DOC will get the other bit as well."

Ms Collier said the purchase would help the community to restore the area to show the original sequence of native vegetation from estuary margin to tall forest.

Dominion Stream had high values for native fish, and the land offered to DOC included important margins around the stream.

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- The Nelson Mail

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