Esplanade repairs to be finished this week

The latest round of repairs to the Esplanade at St Clair should be finished by the end of the week, Dunedin City Council staff say.

Contractors were back at the Esplanade to continue repairs yesterday, following the appearance of a 50cm-deep hole last Thursday.

The sinkhole, next to the St Clair Surf Life Saving Club's old access ramp, was blamed on the combination of leaks in the sea wall and relentless high seas last week, which had created the small cavity.

Council roading maintenance engineer Peter Standring said contractors using a mechanical excavator had spent yesterday digging up the hole, searching for the source of the leaks, and this work had confirmed the council's suspicions about the cause of the hole.

Repairs to fill the cavity, seal the leaks and repave the damaged section of walkway were expected to be carried out later this week, he said.

Council staff were also keeping a close eye on sand sausages further along the beach that had been exposed as sand was stripped away from the beach last week, he said.

''The waves have actually rolled in and eaten away at that bank a bit ... At the moment, they do look reasonably exposed.

''The sausages are there for a purpose, just to maintain that slope stability ... we certainly don't want those sausages rolling away,'' Mr Standring said.

Sand cover along the beach tended to ''come and go'' but the area would be inspected again in the next few days ''just to allay any concerns'', he said.

chris.morris@odt.co.nz

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