South Dunedin wants solutions

Dunedin City Council community development and events manager Joy Gunn speaks at a meeting last...
Dunedin City Council community development and events manager Joy Gunn speaks at a meeting last night on South Dunedin’s future. Meeting chairman Stan Rodger sits at left. Photo: Peter McIntosh.
The Greater South Dunedin Action Group received a strong mandate last night to advocate for the area’s "community interests".

Group chairman Ray Macleod said a  meeting attended by about 150 people in South Dunedin wanted answers to questions about the long term future which residents were still asking two years after the area was hard hit by flooding.

"We can’t wait 10 years" for effective leadership and planning, Mr Macleod emphasised.

The meeting also backed another motion that the Dunedin City Council provide an action plan "structure" by December 1, to provide "protection and support to people, homes and businesses" in the area.

Several council  managers also gave updates on work being done to advance South Dunedin’s interests.

Community development and events manager Joy Gunn said the council was working hard to respond.

Much more work, including modelling studies, was needed to find the best ways of countering potential flooding risks, and the council could not meet a  December 1 target, proposed by the action group, to produce "an initial engineering plan and response".

South Dunedin MP Clare Curran suggested a "systems" approach be developed to advance research, by sharing ideas and resources.

Dunedin GNS scientist Simon Cox spoke  from a "geoscientist’s perspective" and said there was a lack of good quality deep drilling data on the ground beneath South Dunedin, unlike  in Christchurch.

He urged the need for drilling to gain sound scientific data, and also raised the idea of getting everyone "in the room", enabling scientists and specialists to share information about how South Dunedin’s potential flooding challenges could be met.

Property Council New Zealand Otago chapter branch president Geoff Thomas urged the need to jointly  fund proposed scientific drilling, and said good solutions could be found for South Dunedin’s challenges.         


Sci drilling

Where are the likely drillsites?

How much ground area does a drillsite cover?

Since South D is reclaimed former wetland, will the drills hit water at shallow penetration?

There is water at shallow penetration dig down and water is there. wet or dry weather ...Drill sites . .and data . means little in the end. The south is sinking .... Holland and dykes, or move.

AB: there are no likely drillsites because no drilling is planned. It seems like the DCC and ORC prefer uncertain information over certain information that might not support their Global Warming Crusade.

At South Dunedin the water table (groundwater level) is about 47cm above sea level and the ground level is about 111cm above sea level. You would need to drill about 64cm to reach wet soil.

For most of South Dunedin the groundwater level is completely independent of sea-level. The ORC measurements show that there has been no noticeable change in South Dunedin groundwater level since measurements began in 2009.

Global Warming and rizing sea levels have had no effect on South Dunedin and played no part in the 2015 flooding. The only reason for the flooding was the DCC's neglected and substandard stormwater system which was unable to cope with a heavy rain event that most NZ cities are designed to cope with. The stormwater systems of South Dunedin, Green Is, Mosgiel and other areas are still substandard and this means that residents continue to be at risk of more flooding. The DCC continues to under-fund water, sewerage and stormwater - expect these to get even worse.

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