Slow progress on golf course access

A map showing possible options to secure access to the Amberley Beach Golf Club’s course. The...
A map showing possible options to secure access to the Amberley Beach Golf Club’s course. The golf club’s Grierson Ave option is in red, while the council’s alternative is in orange. Image: Supplied by Hurunui District Council
Slow progress is continuing to be made to resolve future road access to a Canterbury golf course.

Hurunui District Council chief executive Hamish Dobbie said he has met with members of the Amberley Beach Golf Club to agree to ‘‘a way forward for the consent process’’.

The 18-hole golf course is under threat from coastal erosion, with the council agreeing in August last year to investigate extending Grierson Avenue through the narrowest part of a wetland.

The proposal would secure access to the club’s course and clubhouse, as well as mahinga kai areas in the Waimaiaia Reserve, and the Waipara River mouth.

Mr Dobbie said the club had verbally agreed to a process and he was waiting for written confirmation from the club.

The cost of the consenting process and hiring a consultant would be borne by the council, he said.

There was no agreement yet on the cost of purchasing land, but Mr Dobbie said he would be following up with the land owner.

A report to the council’s May meeting said staff had met with Environment Canterbury staff and members of the golf club in April to discuss the consenting requirements.

An assessment of environmental effects, an ecological assessment and a hydrological wetland assessment would be required.

Constructing a road through a natural inland wetland was likely to be a non-complying activity under the National Environmental Standards for Freshwater.

Staff estimated it would cost $1.155 million to meet the consenting requirements to build the road.

An alternative option of linking Webbs and Hursley Terrace roads with Golf Links Road from the northern end has been considered.

This option would secure access to most of the golf course, but not the clubhouse and would reduce the course to 16 holes.

It would also secure access to the Waimaiaia Reserve and the Waipara River mouth.

By David Hill, Local Democracy Reporter

■ LDR is local body journalism co-funded by RNZ and NZ On Air.