Council ponders remedy for port

Concerns Port Chalmers heritage buildings are being damaged by the shaking they receive when heavy vehicles pass through the town's centre will be voiced, but when, to whom, and how, is yet to be decided.

At the end of a lengthy Dunedin City Council debate on Tuesday, it was decided to gather more information so a more "diplomatic" and accurate approach could be made to the right authority.

The issue has been a concern for some time, and was raised during discussion about transport issues at a planning and environment committee meeting.

Cr Lee Vandervis said the speed of logging trucks on the main street was a concern, but the meeting was reminded by Cr Syd Brown the road was not a council road, but the responsibility of the New Zealand Transport Agency (NZTA).

Any changes had to be approved by that organisation, and the council could only make applications for change.

He suggested the NZTA should be approached to consider speed and traffic calming measures for safety reasons, which transportation planning manager Sarah Connolly said would be a more "diplomatic" way of approaching the matter.

But Cr John Bezett said the issue was damage to buildings from vibrations caused by heavy vehicles, not necessarily the speed of trucks.

"We want some action," he said.

"Shouldn't we write to the appropriate authority and say `we want action now'?"

Committee chairwoman Cr Kate Wilson said chief executive Athol Stephens should write to Port Otago or trucking companies, but Mr Stephens said the issue was not necessarily speed, but issues like trucks braking on the road.

Cr Brown moved Mr Stephens write to the NZTA raising concerns about the issue, but the meeting decided to get more information for its next meeting, so a more accurate assessment could be made, before contacting the correct authority.

david.loughrey@odt.co.nz

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