As well as attending a meeting in Carterton regarding the region’s recently accelerating issues with ‘boy racers’, minister Mark Mitchell – with his Emergency Management and Recovery portfolio hat on – announced several projects to increase flood resilience across Wairarapa that the government will be tipping more than $8 million into.
“I am visiting Wairarapa as part of the government’s 100-day plan to meet with community representatives affected by the 2023 severe weather events to understand what can be done to speed up and simplify recovery efforts,” Mitchell said.
“These weather events highlighted the need for greater flood resilience across Wairarapa, and I am pleased to demonstrate our commitment by working with local councils to fund these projects.”
Last year funding of $3.5 million for a project to remove blockages in Wairarapa’s Upper Ruamāhanga catchment was announced, meaning a total of $11.6 million has now been allocated to projects in the region from the Local Government Flood Resilience Co-investment Fund.
“The combined outcomes from these six projects will increase the peace of mind for many Wairarapa residents by improving resilience against flooding events across the region,” Mitchell said.
The full details of the announced projects are as follows:
Flat Point flood resilience [Carterton District Council] – $350,000
The initiative will design and build a planted, earthen bund around the western and northern boundaries of the Flat Point settlement on the east coast of the Carterton District Council and includes about 100 properties severely affected by surface water flooding during the North Island weather events.
Cockburn St sewer resilience [Masterton District Council] – $1,300,000
Storage tanks and/or reflux valves will be installed at residential properties to protect against inflows of sewage during heavy rainfall events. This work can be completed relatively quickly, providing a much-needed solution for this long-running problem.
Riversdale water protection [Masterton District Council] – $411,000
High water flows during the severe weather events caused extensive erosion along the Motuwaireka Stream at Riversdale. This particularly impacted land bordering Riversdale Beach Northern Reserve, where considerable land and native vegetation was lost. This initiative will protect residences bordering the northern reserve by stabilising the stream edge, and will avoid further erosion and allow the stream to flow naturally.
Tīnui flood relocation [Masterton District Council] – $4,800,000
Work will be undertaken to mitigate risks of future weather impacts for residential dwellings in Tīnui identified by the council as being directly affected by the severe weather events. Improvements could include raising the home, reinforcing a bund wall, or moving the dwelling to a more suitable area on the property.
Early flood warning systems upgrade [Greater Wellington Regional Council] – $1,250,000
Installation of early warning systems will build greater resilience for communities in isolated areas in eastern Wairarapa. This funding will support engineering assessments and stilling well improvements at critical flood warning sites, satellite communication back systems, and infrastructure improvements and gauging camera installation for high-flow gauging.