Issues regarding securing the supply of underground services
to the University of Otago have meant the Otago Regional
Council has yet to let a contract for flood protection works
on the Water of Leith.
Many services such as gas, water, sewerage, electricity and
fibreoptic cables were located underground near the St David
St footbridge, in Dunedin.
The council's planned works to increase the flood-carrying
capacity of the Leith from St David St to Union St meant
these services had to be shifted or secured so they were not
disrupted during the work.
The Otago Regional Council had budgeted $5.4 million for the
project, scheduled to proceed in front of the university's
registry building over the summer.
Council engineering and natural hazards director Gavin Palmer
said the council was liaising with the university about the
underground service issue to make certain plans were in place
to ensure the security of those services and the mechanics of
Work had already begun to shift some of the underground
Once the that issue was resolved, a contract for the main
civil works would be let and work would begin.
The aim was to begin that work at the end of university exams
''While the Leith is a major piece of work, it is not
However, there were the constraints to do with timing and the
need complete the project quickly to avoid problems should
there be any flooding.
''There will always be risk. The key is to get in quickly and