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Published: 2013-09-04 00:00:00

Waikato Regional Council has confirmed a $170,000 contribution to the cost of investigating ways of retaining sand at Buffalo Beach on the Coromandel.

The decision, at the council’s latest meeting, will come as part of the regional council’s ongoing support for the Whitianga Coastal Futures project and be a critical next step in identifying long term solutions for this area.

The Buffalo Beach project is a joint one with Thames-Coromandel District Council.

It is aimed at managing erosion and finding a long term solution that helps keep sand on the beach, which is one of Whitianga’s main tourist attractions.

The $170,000 will come from the council’s 2012-13 operating surplus.

Some short and medium term key works from the Whitianga Coastal Futures project are already planned or underway based on what is known about this issue. The investigation work will further assist with understanding how the beach functions and to model the effectiveness of structures or the addition of sand, which might be considered for the future.

This modelling will enable selection of the most likely longer term options, likely costs and feed into any more detailed work that may be needed to develop any final solutions.