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River scheme making progress

The next stage of construction of the Tongariro River Flood Protection Scheme is underway, with contractors preparing sites around Turangi.

Work has begun on stopbanks beside properties on along Herekiekie St, between Tongariro Lodge and Graces Rd and will take place immediately in front of Bridge Lodge by contractor T W Moore Ltd. The works will also include gravel extraction, rock work and shoal modification to reduce the risk of flood damage to the vulnerable areas of the Turangi township, particularly Herekiekie Street.

Project manager Jan Hania said Environment Waikato would be working with DOC throughout the works programme to ensure best environmental outcomes were achieved as work progressed.

“Extensive consultation has taken place with key stakeholders, particularly local hapu, Turangitukua, Tuwharetoa Maori Trust Board and Turangi Community Board to ensure that works are in line with community needs,” he said.

The initial phase of the works will focus on stopbanking at Herekiekie Street and construction of a rock groyne in the river bed in front of the White Water Lodge. Gravel extraction will also be taking place in the early stages of the current works.

“Construction sites are potentially hazardous areas due the use of heavy machinery and people should stay clear of these areas while work is underway.”

Work in the river bed will be completed by April 30 to minimise disruption to the fishing community and fish spawning while stopbanks and other work out of the river will be completed around the beginning of June.

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