Dunedin sand dune damage response expected this week

Dunedin City Council staff and engineers are considering the response to damage to sand dunes on city beaches, and expect to come up with options later this week.

Similar damage to dunes in heavy storms in 2007 resulted in more than 12,500cu m of sand being dumped and formed along the sand sausages on St Clair Beach, and another 5500cu m moved and shaped at Middle Beach.

The sand was sourced from the Otago Harbour dredge, and trucked to the beaches.

An apron of ''reno'' or steel mesh and rock mattresses was installed at Middle Beach in the weeks after that storm.

Both the sand sausages and reno mattresses were fully exposed in last week's storms.

Council infrastructure and networks general manager Ruth Stokes said yesterday staff had been working with engineers who had provided advice on options for ''a number of years''.

Engineers and staff had visited the area last week, and would return this week.

A report on options would be put together by Thursday.

''They're just looking at the shorter-term and longer-term options ... I'm sure that re-sanding will be part of the options we're considering.''

Mrs Stokes said the council recognised there was ''significant public interest'' and would hold public meetings on ''potential significant works''.

''We do appreciate there's a high degree of interest.''

The council ended a five-year public information, research, data gathering and consultation process on long-term management options for the area in 2012 and decided to continue an emergency holding pattern, with a swift response to erosion when it occurred.

A ''backstop wall'' has been discussed since then, but not taken further.

• Twenty-four thousand tonnes of quartz-based sand from Ferny Hill quarry, near Mt Allan, is being railed north to replace sand washed away from Freyberg and Oriental Beaches in Wellington. The $400,000 project is expected to be completed early next month.

The first of the sand was placed last week.

Add a Comment

Our journalists are your neighbours

We are the South's eyes and ears in crucial council meetings, at court hearings, on the sidelines of sporting events and on the frontline of breaking news.

As our region faces uncharted waters in the wake of a global pandemic, Otago Daily Times continues to bring you local stories that matter.

We employ local journalists and photographers to tell your stories, as other outlets cut local coverage in favour of stories told out of Auckland, Wellington and Christchurch.

You can help us continue to bring you local news you can trust by becoming a supporter.

Become a Supporter