Track costs study

Dunedin City Council will investigate the implications of taking over maintenance of a coastal walkway linking Cargill's Castle and nearby Tunnel Beach.

Councillors voted for the investigation at yesterday's long-term plan deliberations after Cargill's Castle Trust chairman Steven De Graaf brought up the track at last week's submission hearings.

The trust planned to raise the $225,000 to construct an almost 2km track along Dunedin's south coast, linking the category one-listed castle with nearby Tunnel Beach and eventually St Clair, but wanted the council to agree to maintain it.

The vote meant staff would talk to the trust and look at the ''funding implications'' of the track's maintenance.

Mayor Dave Cull, proponent of the motion, said it was trying to be ''positive and grateful'' for the work put in to the plan, without making any firm commitments.

Mr Cull earlier said it would not be ''fair'' to expect the trust to start work on the track without the council first saying whether it would take over maintenance.

In response to a question from Cr Aaron Hawkins, parks recreation and aquatics acting group manager Richard Saunders said the cost of track maintenance depended on the type of materials used on the track.

Cr Doug Hall questioned whether the council should be taking over another track given ''so many'' tracks it looked after now were not properly maintained.

Cr Lee Vandervis questioned whether the path, which went along the clifftops, should be opened up to the public, given the problems there had been at Lawyers Head. vaughan.elder@odt.co.nz

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