Wednesday, May 22, 2024

Stabilisation build on horizon for Manawatū River

Horizons Regional Council says it is continuing to improve the region’s climate resilience and flood protection, with a new stabilisation structure to be built along the Manawatū River in Palmerston North.

Horizons senior project engineer, Diandri van Zyl says contractors have begun work on the site where a 210-metre-long rock armouring structure will be built along the true right bank of the Manawatū River near the end of Albert Street, Palmerston North.

“This work is intended to stabilise the bank and improve the resilience of flood protection in the area, which protects a large portion of the Hokowhitu suburb,” Ms van Zyl says.

“Keeping our communities safe by improving flood protection in Palmerston North is the main objective of this project.

Ms van Zyl said locals may see machinery within the river during construction. 

“Work comprises stripping bank vegetation, cutting and shaping the bank, and constructing the armouring. 

“We planned to complete the project this construction season, but delays caused by Cyclone Gabrielle mean we may have to put some work off until next season. Not completing the work this season will not result in vulnerable flood protection this winter.”

The work is part of a series of climate resilience projects Horizons is delivering in Rangītikei, Foxton, Palmerston North and the lower Manawatū River area after receiving $26.9 million from Kānoa, the government’s Regional Economic Development and Investment Unit, says Ms van Zyl.

“Work has continued on other climate resilience projects, despite Cyclone Gabrielle and other weather events slowing progress.”

“Vegetation management has been undertaken on the Rangitīkei River between the Bulls bridge and Scotts Ferry to increase the river channel capacity. This will allow more water to be conveyed during high flows. 

“Horizons-owned land along the river about 10 kilometres from the river mouth will be revegetated to protect the stopbank, with a planting plan developed and plants procured for the upcoming planting season. This will also increase biodiversity in the area.

“Reinforcement of stopbanks which protect livelihoods near Tokomaru has also continued. The finished project there will result in uniform stopbanks with improved resilience.”

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