Leith flood protection work set to start

Graphic: ODT

Work on the next stage of the Otago Regional Council's Leith Flood Protection Scheme, between the Union St bridge and Clyde St, is expected to begin on Wednesday.

The $3.5 million works, to be completed by Downer Group, are part of the scheduled flood protection programme for 2017, and will help improve the river's safety and amenity value at the "University Bend'' reach.

ORC engineering, hazards, and science director Gavin Palmer said improvements included raising the wall along the right bank; putting in a new retaining wall along the left bank; stabilising the river bed and channel walls; and providing public access to the river bed and terraces along part of the left bank.

The development of the banks of the Water of the Leith at the University of Otago. Photo: Facebook/DCC
The development of the banks of the Water of the Leith at the University of Otago. Photo: ODT files

"Works on the left bank will cross over into the Memorial Garden. All necessary care will be taken to preserve the dedicated trees and any trees removed will not be dedicated trees.''

Because of the nature of the works, disruption from noise was likely. He said the council and the University of Otago had agreed on noise limits, and they would be maintained as much as possible.

Dr Palmer said pedestrian access would remain open, with short closures from time to time, at the ITS building, the Leith St footbridge and the back entrance to the Richardson Building.

However, access behind the Richardson Building through to Union St bridge would be closed.

The Albany St car park would remain open, but there would be some temporary loss of car parking along Clyde St, to make way for site access.

Dr Palmer said the council was responsible for ensuring the river had the capacity to cope with high floodwaters and help keep the campus and city safe from flooding.

"These upcoming works will continue to expand on the previous protection works done on campus, providing a safer and more enjoyable environment for everyone.''



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