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Progress continues on climate resilience projects across Horizons Region

Horizons Regional Council’s work to improve flood protection and climate resilience across the Horizons Region, while also providing employment and economic benefit, continues to hit milestones as the new construction season ramps up.

As part of Budget 2020, central government committed $210 million for climate resilience and flood projection across the country. Horizons received $26.9m from Kānoa – Regional Economic Development & Investment Unit.

The Kānoa Climate Resilience Advisory Board visited some of Horizons’ climate resilience infrastructure projects while they were in the Horizons Region on 29 and 30 November.

Horizons group manager catchment operations Dr Jon Roygard says the suite of projects in the Foxton, Rangitīkei, Lower Manawatū and Palmerston North areas will provide resilience for many people in various locations.

“The funding from Kānoa enabled us to do this work much sooner than we otherwise would have, providing additional protection for hundreds of people, properties and businesses, as well as key infrastructure such as roads.

“The local economy and workforce also benefits from these projects, with the funding helping to provide employment and development opportunities both internally and for contractors across the Horizons Region. We are also working with iwi and hapū, as well as community groups, to create positive social outcomes.”

Dr Roygard says construction of rock armouring along the Manawatū River near Te Matai Road, between Ashhurst and Palmerston North, is nearly complete.

“This project will help to keep homes, business, infrastructure and productive land safe by strengthening the existing stopbank to prevent undermining.

“Other climate resilience infrastructure projects are in the construction phase, including a site near the end of Albert Street, Palmerston North. This project involves building a 210-metre-long rock armouring structure along one side of the Manawatū River to increase flood protection for a large part of the Hokowhitu suburb.

“The Manawatū River Shared Pathway in this area is popular with the public, especially as we move into summer. We appreciate people’s patience while we operate in the area to get this work done, especially as some work depends on the river being below certain heights.

“We are also beginning work at Scotts Ferry to create a new more resilient track on the stopbank. We plan to have this work complete by Christmas.

“Other projects are far along in the planning phase, including one designed to upgrade ageing infrastructure along the Mangaone Stream through Palmerston North.”

More information about Horizons’ climate resilience infrastructure projects can be found at horizons.govt.nz.


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