Poutū-te-rangi (March) 2019 Newsletter

Poutū-te-rangi (March) 2019 Newsletter

Kia ora koutou katoa. The year seems to be flying by. The mornings often bring a bit of ground fog, soon burned off by the sun, and followed by a scorching day. Some days the sea has been so calm and the day so warm you feel like you're on a Pacific island. Where are the coconut palms?

In this newsletter …

  1. Wandering stock
  2. Review of Speed Limits on Rural Roads
  3. Congested roads
  4. Congested river
  5. River cleanup
  6. Tonkin and Taylor erosion report
  7. Problems at Hank Edwards Reserve
  8. Reay Mackay Grove beach track maintenance
  9. Blue beach track marker posts
  10. Helicopters and Hercules
  11. Property news
  12. Do you know

Wandering stock

There have been a few reports recently of wandering stock, some near the village entrance. It pays to take extra care on the roads, especially as the days grow shorter.

Review of Speed Limits on Rural Roads

The Horowhenua District Council called for submissions on speed limits on rural roads around the district. The Ratepayers Association already held the position that Waikawa Beach Road should be no more than 80Kph for its full length. There were suggested changes though for Strathnaver Drive, Reay Mackay Grove, Emma drive and Kristin Place so we contacted our members from those parts for their opinions. We put in a submission that you can read at Submission emailed on Review of Speed Limits on Rural Roads. In essence, we suggested lower limits for all affected roads.

Congested roads

Of course speed limits are irrelevant when the roads are congested, as been happening a lot lately along SH1. On 2nd of March it took an hour and a quarter to drive from Waikawa Beach to the roundabout at Ōtaki. Folks blamed that on the Eminem concert in Wellington, but there's been an awful lot of congestion. How much, you ask? The page Traffic problems on our website will give you an idea.

Congested river

One member reported that on a kayak trip upstream from the footbridge he couldn't get through all the weed that now fills the river. We've contacted Horizons Regional Council about this and have had an initial response. We haven't yet heard though what action they will take. As is so often the case with either Council, we'll need to persist in following up.

River cleanup

When it comes to the quality of the water in the river we know things aren't good. Associate Environment Minister Eugenie Sage recently announced a funding grant to the Waikawa Stream Community Catchment Project. Specific goals include improving the quality of water in the river.

Landcare Trust New Zealand is bringing together landholders, community members, and stakeholders to work with the regional council to help promote more sustainable land use and improve the health of streams in the catchment.

Interestingly, this year the E. Coli levels in our stream by the footbridge have been more often Green (11) than not Green (9). That makes a very nice change, though it's still only slightly more than 50% of the time.

Read more about the Water Project at The river water by the footbridge will get cleaner. Miraz Jordan is representing the Association on the Project Steering Group.

Water project launch event.
Water project launch event.
Where the 2 streams meet, west of Whakahoro Road, dirty water from the Waiouti on the left and cleaner water from the Waikawa on the right.
Where the 2 streams meet, west of Whakahoro Road, dirty water from the Waiouti on the left and cleaner water from the Waikawa on the right.

Tonkin and Taylor erosion report

Ramon Strong from Horizons Regional Council will be presenting the findings at our next Committee meeting (13 April). We'll be able to update you after that. Read the background at Tonkin and Taylor River Mouth Report — update.

Problems at Hank Edwards Reserve

In recent weeks there have been problems with the toilets at Hank Edwards Reserve. We advised the Horowhenua District Council and the problems were quickly sorted out. The recycling container has also gone, now that summer's over. A mess of rubbish that belonged in the container, and miscellaneous rubbish dumped nearby was left behind. Again, we advised the Council and it was quickly cleaned up.

Reay Mackay Grove beach track maintenance

It's a pity that prompt action hasn't been carried over to our repeated requests that the beach tracks off Reay Mackay Grove be cleared of the lupins hindering access to the beach. We'll persist in our requests.

Blue beach track marker posts

The Council are putting up blue beach access marker posts all over the region. We already have one tester in place at the beach end of the south track off Reay Mackay Grove. Feedback from track users has been very positive. The remaining posts are in production and should arrive soon. The Council has worked with the Association to decide on wording and placement for the posts.

Helicopters and Hercules

On 11 March a military NH90 helicopter arrived at Waikawa Beach and hovered very low in one spot for a long time. It also did a couple of circuits near Strathnaver Drive. At one point it seemed to winch something up.

A few days later, after the mass shooting at the mosques in Christchurch, we had several days of Hercules aircraft flying low over Waikawa Beach on their way back to base.

Watch a 30 second video by Charlie Strivens of the 3 Hercules flying past.

Three low flying Hercules aircraft.
Three low flying Hercules aircraft.

Property news

The house in James Street sold, as did a section on Strathnaver Drive, 20 Manga Pirau Street and 4 Duncan Street. Meanwhile new houses are proliferating still on Strathnaver Drive and Reay Mackay Grove.

Do you know

This is the time of year when you need to know about Aquagold Water Supply, based right here at Waikawa Beach. While we've had a little sprinkle of rain recently, your water tank is probably be getting low. Reggie's been delivering water in these parts since 2003. Because he's based here he can usually fit in an urgent delivery, but of course it's better to be prepared. Do you know how much rain you need to fill your water tank? Take a look at A word about rainwater tanks.

Ngā mihi nui,
Miraz Jordan

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