Flood barrier to be built around rest-home

Firefighters check on the flooded Radius Fulton care home in South Dunedin  in February this year...
Firefighters check on the flooded Radius Fulton care home in South Dunedin in February this year. Photo: Peter McIntosh
A South Dunedin rest-home evacuated twice in the past three years because of flooding is building a 2m-high block wall to prevent it happening again.

Radius Fulton care home in Hillside Rd has consent to build a 2m-high concrete block wall around its perimeter set into a ditch dug between 0.5m and 1.1m into the ground.

Because the wall would be set below road level in the ditch, most of it would be hidden from the public’s view.

Where the wall was visible from the street it would be plastered and rounded.Removable flood gates would stop any water from flowing into the site during extreme rain events.

A new wastewater tank, two new mud-tanks and a stormwater pump would also be installed.

In February, the building was evacuated after flooding caused wastewater to flow through the building, damaging the carpets and skirting boards.

More flooding in July 2015 severely damaged two wings of the building, costing about $2 million. Both times it was months before the elderly residents were able to return and some had to be temporarily housed  in Invercargill and Christchurch.

Manager Robin Bowie said the protection had been designed so the site could withstand even the most severe flooding.

As well as providing an effective physical barrier to floodwaters, the work would ease the anxiety of residents and staff, Mrs Bowie said.

She was unable to say how much the four to six-month project would cost but it was a significant amount. Naylor Love would start work on the wall  in about two weeks.

The care home had worked closely with the Dunedin City Council on the plans, Mrs Bowie said.

"We met with the council and they have been really supportive of the process to mitigate the risk of flooding."

tim.miller@odt.co.nz

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