New Zealand: Pukekura Park Dredging Kicks Off
Four months of work begins in Pukekura Park this week with the first of two major projects kicking off.
As part of a programme to improve water quality in the park, silt will be dredged from the Main Lake, Fountain Lake and the Serpentine (between the main and lily lakes) between early June and the end of September.
This project starts with the Main Lake’s water level being lowered this week.
Then early next month, installation of a major new playground starts with the removal of the existing play equipment near the water wheel.
“The work will be noisy and there will be a lot of machinery and workers in the playground and lakes areas during the next four months, but both projects will be finished before the Taranaki Garden Festival begins,” says Manager Parks Mark Bruhn.
“Apart from the playground area and some sections of paths around the lakes, all public areas in the park will remain open – including Tea House on the Lake and the Fernery and Display Houses.
“Please follow the signs that will guide people around any closed areas.”
Free guided tours will give the public an inside look at the lakes project as well as behind the scenes of the newly upgraded Fernery and Display Houses.
“There will be a lot of interest in what is going on and also in the recent improvements at the Fernery and Display Houses, so the guided tours will be a great way for people to see what’s happening and ask any questions.”
Information about the guided tours will be published in the Council’s Seven Days newsletter in the North Taranaki Midweek, and on the Council’s website.
The lake dredging and lake-edge repairs have a $1.2 million budget, and follow the establishment of wetlands and forebays during summer to prevent silt in the Maranui Gully, Kaimata and Struan Walkway streams from reaching the park’s lakes system. About 10,000m3 of silt is expected to be dredged from the three lakes.
The dredging will take place from 8am to 6pm Monday to Friday, and 8am to noon on Saturdays. “It’s noisy work,” says Mr Bruhn. “Fish and eels will stay away from the dredge because of the noise, and we remind the public to keep dogs on their leads as the noise could frighten them.”
Each lake will first have its water level lowered so that repairs can be made to the lake edge. The lake will then be refilled so that a dredge controlled by guy lines anchored on either side of the lake can operate.
The silt will be pumped to a contained dewatering facility behind the TSB Bowl of Brooklands stage, from where it will be trucked to a landfill operated by Whittaker Civil Engineering. The car park behind the Bowl stage will be fenced off during this time, and there will be truck movements along the access road through Pukekura Raceway to Coronation Avenue.
Installation of the new playground should be finished by the middle of September. It will feature the New Zealand Wave – unique climbing frame nearly 3m high and 19m long – as well as a water feature, swings, slides, an in-ground trampoline, tunnels and more.
“Pukekura Park is a magnet for families and this new playground will give kids a lot of fun, memorable experiences,” says Mr Bruhn.
“Unfortunately the wooden fort attached to the existing slide doesn’t meet safety and disability standards and has to be removed. However we will be replacing this structure with two towers, one with a double junior slide and the other with an enclosed senior slide.
“The existing slide will eventually be relocated to another playground in the district.”
Of the $560,000 cost of the playground and earthworks, donations of $100,000 has come from Energyworks Ltd and $60,000 from the New Zealand Community Trust. The remainder is coming from depreciation (rates funding set aside for the renewal of community assets).
Press Release, May 30, 2013