Latest News & Public Notices

Our weekly wrap-up heading into the long weekend

21 October 2022

Welcome to the weekly wrap-up of our latest Council project news, important dates and information about what's happening in our district.

The latest with our Mayor Len

The first two weeks in the job has been exhilarating, exciting and a whirlwind of meetings.

“I sat down with our new Council to talk about how we’ll all work together over the next three years, to build consensus and deliver some really good outcomes for our communities,” Mayor Len says.

Len also went to Wellington for the Local Government NZ Mayoral Induction, where he met new Wellington Mayor Tory Whanau (pictured, with Mayor Len) and many of the other new and returning mayors from across the country.

This long weekend Mayor Len is off to Whangamatā for ‘Toes in the water’ and will attend the Hahei Water Supply Association's Annual General Meeting and the Pāuanui Ratepayers and Residents Association AGM.

Cook Monument at Kōpū Bridge to be stored locally

On Thursday 27 October 2022 (weather dependent), the damaged Cook Monument at Kōpū Bridge in Thames will be dismantled and put into storage until further notice.

Manatū Taonga Ministry for Culture and Heritage, working in consultation with our Council and Ngāti Marū, has been exploring feasible options for the monument’s future. As the Cook Monument was significantly damaged beyond repair, options are limited for the remnants of the monument.

Unfortunately, a feasible option for the remains has not yet been identified. This work will continue while the monument is in storage. The Ministry recognises and acknowledges the controversial nature of this monument and its connection to Captain James Cook.

The planned storage of the monument will protect what remains of it from further vandalism, while options are explored for how it can better serve as an educational tool for future generations. It is important that any future options for publicly displaying the monument, or fragments of it, do not cause distress for mana whenua.

As the monument is currently located on road reserve land, traffic management will be in place on the day of removal.

For more information, please contact info@mch.govt.nz.

Kōpū Marine Precinct Update

Construction work to form the access to the Kōpū Marine Precinct along King Street has continued this week.

The black strip in the photo where the yellow digger is operating is King Street. In the top right of the photo is the current boat ramp. The line of cones there is part of the traffic management along the Hauraki Rail Trail, where there are safety gates and signage requiring cyclists to dismount to cross the work site.

Over the summer, this land-based work will continue. Construction of the commercial wharf, commercial boat slipway and recreational boat ramp is scheduled to begin in March 2023 and be completed by the end of the year. Then, trailer boat car parking can be put in place and King Street finalised with an expected public opening of the new marine precinct targeted for May 2024.

See tcdc.govt.nz/kopumarineprecinct for more information.

Fullers360 Auckland-Coromandel ferry service remains on hold this summer

Like many other businesses across the country, Fullers360 has been managing staff shortages for some time due to an industry-wide skills shortage. These shortages have resulted in the ferry operator regrettably being unable to service the Auckland-Coromandel ferry route which will remain on hold through the 2022/23 summer season until staffing levels allow for it to resume.

Fullers360 CEO, Mike Horne, says: “Our business has been grappling with skills shortage issues for over a year, alongside many other transport and tourism operators in New Zealand. The limited talent pool in New Zealand means we require skilled people with specific marine qualifications, as set out by Maritime New Zealand, which can take many months and years to achieve from an entry level position.”

The company says it has been working hard to address the current skills shortage through a number of initiatives including engaging people from other markets including the Philippines, South Africa, Australia and the US. 

“Regrettably these initiatives and efforts have not delivered us enough staff to close the critical skills shortage gap in time for this coming summer,” says Horne.

“We understand this decision will have a flow-on effect to the Coromandel communities, in particular local businesses who have previously relied on our service for transport and increased foot traffic over this period. Cancelled services are a last resort for our business and one we take all feasible action to avoid,” he added.

“I want to assure you, we are doing our best to find short and long-term solutions to resolve these issues and look forward to providing continued support to the Coromandel as soon as we are able.”

Coastal monitoring of Waikato region beaches to get underway

The summer monitoring programme of Waikato region beaches and estuaries is due to get underway at the end of the month with help from two environmental science university students.

Every year, Waikato Regional Council staff monitor coastal water quality, estuary benthic macrofauna (sediment-dwelling organisms), stream water quality, freshwater fish and water levels of key lakes and wetlands. They’re helped during the peak monitoring period by students employed from November to around March.

Much of this testing is part of a regional council drive to gain better information about what’s happening in the region’s coastal waters and to make the latest results for the coast, rivers and lakes available to the public on the LAWA website – www.lawa.org.nz – under Can I Swim Here? Read more here.

Kūaotunu Peninsula Biosphere Dark Sky Project moves forward with funding secured

The exceptionally starry nights experienced on the Kūaotunu Peninsula are soon to be preserved for the future as the Biosphere Dark Sky Project secures government funding through Destination Hauraki Coromandel, our Regional Tourism Organisation.

The $50,000 grant will allow the Kūaotunu Peninsula Biosphere Working Group leading the initiative to engage experts to proceed with a request to change current lighting regulations in our Council's District Plan. This will help gain official recognition by the International Dark-Sky Association (IDA) as a Dark Sky Community. Read more here.

Paku Boat Ramp

Paku Boat Ramp is on track to re-open today in time for Labour Weekend. There have been a few issues during construction but the last small area of concrete was completed yesterday and contractors are going in today to remove the sheet piling. We left this stage as late as possible to allow the concrete to harden before bringing on the heavy machinery that is needed to remove the sheet piles.

Coromandel Town Reservoir

Reservoir repair in Coromandel rescheduled to Thursday 27 October.

Coromandel residents may experience varying water pressure between sporadically between 7:00am to 3:00pm while we drain the reservoir, carry out repairs and then start refilling.

New bridge for Albert St, Coromandel Town

Our Council is replacing the existing bridge on Albert St, Coromandel Town, during November. The project has been awarded to Bridge It NZ Ltd and works are planned to start on site on Tuesday 25 October.

The removal of the existing bridge will start on 14 November and the road will be closed to vehicles from about 14 to 24 November. A temporary footbridge will provide pedestrian access at all times. Our contractor will aim to complete the project as soon as possible to minimise disruption. We apologise in advance for any inconvenience this may cause.

Whitianga's New Refuse Transfer Station

The final design of the transfer station is nearly complete and constructoin of water, wastewater and stormwater infrastructure infrastructure will begin in two weeks.

The new facility is expected to be open in March 2023. The site will include a resource recovery centre like the Seagull Centre in Thames, to divert usable goods away from landfill.

The layout of the transfer station has been designed with a focus on customer experience, so visitors can progress from the recycling drop-off area, to the resource recovery centre, then exit without entering the main site. Or, users can cross the entry weighbridge to deposit waste items for landfill, green waste, whiteware and more before exiting through the second weighbridge.

See tcdc.govt.nz/MBRTS for more information.

Coromandel Wharf vandalised

The Coromandel Wharf has been damaged by someone doing burnouts.

This started a fire that burnt through decking and a bearer.

If you know anything about this damage, which will be repaired at ratepayers' expense, please contact Police on 105 quoting file number OR-1058124N, or us on 07 868 0200.

The site is being made safe while repairs are priced. Please avoid driving over the damaged section.

Colville Road

A retaining wall project on Colville Rd starts Tuesday 25 October, 1km East of Waitete Bay Road. This project was planned to start earlier this year, however due to design changes and supply issues it was delayed. Work will take place between 7am-6pm, Monday to Friday, and possibly 7.30am-1pm on Saturdays. It is expected to be finished early December. Speed will be restricted with stop/go traffic management in place.

Whangamatā public toilet upgrades

The Island View and Martyn Road facilities are now open. Beach Road is expected to be finished by the end of this month.

Brenton Place, Whangamatā

The staircase to improve access to the existing natural path should be finished next week.

Kennedy Park, Pāuanui

The new fitness equipment is to ready to be used.

Mercury View and Sands Cres, Matarangi

Over Easter the bollards were vandalised. Boulders are now in place to stop vehicles on the reserve, protecting all users enjoying this space. If you need to access the beach for other recreational activites such as fishing with a contiki, please use the other accessways and boat ramps (Ocean Close or Bluff Road).

What's on in the Coromandel?

Enjoy the Coromandel vibe this Labour Weekend.

It's all go and glitter for Art After Dark, brought to you by the Whangamatā Arts Collective. Enjoy an evening of art, music, prizes, canapés, wine and of course, glitter. Whiti Food Fest will be tempting tastebuds with delicious food, market stalls and live music. Don't forget to check out our local community markets as well for stalls, crafts and local produce from honey to organic seedlings.

Also, a weekend of country music in Thames. See more about upcoming events here.

Get Ready for NZ ShakeOut

New Zealand ShakeOut is our national earthquake drill and tsunami hikoi and it’s happening on Thursday 27 October at 9:30am. 

In case of emergency, if you need to evacuate, make sure you have a household plan and some basic supplies packed and ready to go. These should include enough food and water for you, your family and your pets for three days, a torch and radio with spare batteries, warm waterproof clothing and comfy walking shoes, personal documents and medications, and a first aid kit. Get prepared here.

Attention all Kiwi boaties 

Fishing legend Matt Watson has a message for all boaties and visitors to Aotea Great Barrier Island and Ahuahu Great Mercury Island about the invasive pest weed species Caulerpa. Watch it here.

 

 

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