DCC Draft Annual Plan 2013/14: Portobello Harington Point Road Improvements Project

Updated Post 29.3.13

Received yesterday by email.

Something that seems to have slipped the radar in Dunedin news of late is the WIDENING of Portobello Harington Point Road on the Otago Peninsula.

Looking at the Draft Annual Plan, the City Council intends to spend the following on what amounts to an environmental and heritage damaging folly. That’s only 33-34 % of the budget, given NZTA will subsidise the remaining 66-67% of the project.

DCC Draft Annual Plan - Road widening[click on image to enlarge]

See page 24, Section 1 Group of Activities (PDF, 1.5 MB)
and page 142, Section 2 Financial Statements (PDF, 1.2 MB)

The road widening (including the Vauxhall and Macandrew Bay areas already completed) will reclaim nearly 11 hectares of the Otago Harbour — a conservative measurement given plans show significantly more reclamation if the topography requires it.

Consultation on the current design closed yesterday, Thursday 28 March, indicating approval of the plan is a given despite the consultation process for the Annual Plan this year and in years to come.

[29.3.13 – The plans are not available for viewing online, why not?]

There will be irrevocable damage to the Peninsula and Harbour landscape, heritage features and the ecology if this misguided piece of engineering continues.

It is feared the Council has the bit between its teeth on this project — described as being about “liveability”, according to Mayor Cull at the Portobello Annual Plan ‘roadshow’.

It might be worth pointing out to your readers that they look closely at the Draft Annual Plan in regards to this area of Council expenditure.

Searching Council for cost benefit and recreational analyses fails to show much other than what is in the June 2008 Cycle Strategy (PDF, 787 KB).

[See also: Dunedin’s Proposed Cycle Network, adopted August 2011]

Few will have problems with the desirability of access, but the lack of design sensitivity and impact on the values of the area seem inconsistent with the value of the Peninsula and Harbour to the community and our economy.

This is certainly an issue worth looking at more deeply.


Posted by Elizabeth Kerr


Filed under Business, Construction, DCC, Design, Economics, Geography, Heritage, Politics, Project management, Site, Tourism

14 responses to “DCC Draft Annual Plan 2013/14: Portobello Harington Point Road Improvements Project

  1. Calvin Oaten

    One question: Where’s the money???

  2. Whippet

    That’s easy answered Calvin. In yours & our pockets.

  3. ### DScene 3 April 2013
    Road plans spark fears (page 3)
    By Wilma McCorkindale
    Portobello objectors want a rewrite of the $28m road widening plan which they say threatens to ruin the township’s identity. The Dunedin City Council (DCC) is yet to produce detailed plans of the work but widening of up to eight metres could be carried out, its website said. That would allow for on-road cycle lanes and a wide separate shared path that could be used by pedestrian and cyclists.

    ‘‘We are proposing to reclaim land from the harbour rather than purchasing it from property owners who live next to the road,’’ the council said. ‘‘The reclamation will be the minimum that will allow the road to be widened. We will do the work with environmental sensitivity and the new sea wall will be constructed using hand-placed rock in accordance with established heritage protocols.’’

    However, if work to widen Portobello Rd between Broad Bay and Portobello went ahead the village would lose its only swimming beach and a number of scenic historic local landscape features Paul Pope, chairman of Portobello Community Incorporated, said in a submission to the plan.
    {continues} #bookmark

    Dunedin Amenities Society on the road widening project

    The City Council presented the proposal to the Community Board in May, 2012 and little was reported at the time. It begs the question, if both political arms of the Council were making these plans 9 months ago why did the public only get the opportunity to comment on them in late February-March 28th, and only for a trifling 4 weeks?

    Follow the Yellow Brick Road
    By daseditor | April 5, 2013
    One of the most famous lines from “The Wizard of Oz” is when Dorothy says to her little dog “Toto, I’ve a feeling we’re not in Kansas anymore.” That particular line has become a cultural metaphor used when we visit places or see things that are not familiar to us and we relate them back to our own personal vision of the world. That same cultural metaphor may well apply to the proposals being put together by the Dunedin City Council for the Otago Peninsula.
    The Dunedin City Council road widening programme will include reclaiming 5-8 metres of the Otago Harbour shoreline along a 13 kilometre stretch from Burns Point (near Vauxhall) to the entrance point of Taiaroa Head. It will cost the City Council nearly $28 million over 9 years, with a further 66% of the construction subsidised by the New Zealand Transport Agency.

    That’s a total project fund of $84 million.

    The driving force behind this development has been the Council’s desire to create better cycling and pedestrian access to and around the Peninsula from Portobello and Harrington Point Roads. Traffic safety has also been mooted as the justification for the project and on the face of it that sounds reasonable. However, like all things the devil is always in the detail, and this project requires deeper financial, landscape and ecological scrutiny.
    Read more


  5. ### ODT Online Sun, 28 Apr 2013
    Submitters respond to road-widening plans
    By Jonathan Chilton-Towle – The Star
    The council wants to widen sections of Portobello Rd and Harington Point Rd between Vauxhall and Taiaroa Head. […] In his submission, Dunedin Amenities Society chair Robin Hyndman said opportunities for pedestrian and cycling access were important but the council had yet to present a robust or detailed analysis of the financial, environmental, landscape, cultural and community implications.
    Read more

    NOTE – Two submission processes have occurred: one outside of and preceding the annual plan process; and this year’s annual plan consultation round – of which there may be overlap of content and issues. The council has an obligation to publicly clarify this situation.

  6. I have to say that this was a very confused article, and illustrates the confusion within Council over the process that is actually being followed here.

    Submissions were called for by the City Council by March 28th on the design of the road widening. There were some 30 submissions on the design and those submissions have never been reported in writing to the City Council or Community Board.

    In fact only a “verbal” report was ever been given so the public have no idea what actually has been said.

    The Star report has suggested that those submissions were made on the Annual Plan, that is incorrect. The only area of the road widening that can be submitted on in the Annual Plan is the planned section at Otakou.

    Once again Councillor MacTavish and the quoted Community Board members have misrepresented the actual process that is being undertaken. So much for transparency in local government.

    • I hope this has been taken up with CE Paul Orders for correction – otherwise it reads as a corruption of council’s due process which it is his job to prevent.

      The Star and the ODT both need to print corrections for misreporting or not checking of the ‘facts’ fed.

      I would copy all submissions and email them to all councillors with a cover explanation. Don’t take this sitting down.

      Don’t know who is standing in for Sandy Graham (governance manager) in her absence.

  7. ### ODT Online Wed, 8 May 2013
    Meeting to discuss widening of road
    The Dunedin City Council will hold a public meeting next Monday to discuss changes to its designs for widening parts of Portobello Rd and Harington Point Rd. Projects engineer Evan Matheson said community submissions prompted alterations to the plans. “The feedback we received during the consultation in March highlighted some changes the community wanted. This has been incorporated into these new designs, and we want to check that we’re on the right track, and if anyone has any more ideas to add,” he said.
    Read more

    ● The meeting, on Monday 13 May 2013, to be attended by council staff, Cr Jinty MacTavish, and Otago Peninsula Community Board members, will be held in Portobello Coronation Hall, starting at 7pm.

    • ### ODT Online Sat, 11 May 2013
      Plans for sea walls with road widening
      By Debbie Porteous
      Sections of historic sea wall supporting the road skirting the harbour edge of Otago Peninsula may be protected and left visible during the planned widening of the road. The Dunedin City Council plans to widen the remaining unwidened sections of Portobello Rd and Harington Point Rd between Vauxhall and Taiaroa Head over the next 10 years to incorporate pedestrian and cycling facilities. Work on the first of seven remaining sections, at Harington Point, is expected to begin in the 2013-14 year. The project involves widening the road, by reclaiming land from the harbour, up to 8m in places. Along most of the widened road’s edge a new sea wall will be constructed using hand-placed rock in accordance with heritage protocols. But the council is still in talks with the Historic Places Trust over several sections of the original seawall the trust wants untouched and left visible.
      Read more

    • ### ch9.co.nz May 13, 2013 – 6:57pm
      DCC discussing new designs for road widening
      The DCC will be discussing new designs for the widening of Portobello and Harington Point Roads at a meeting tonight.

      • Now tell us the real story!

        ### ch9.co.nz May 14, 2013 – 6:57pm
        Public concerns put to rest
        A meeting on the widening of Portobello and Harington Point Roads last night put to rest some public concerns on the issue. Landmarks such as Pineapple Rock and the ancient wall will be preserved. And now the project is on course towards completion – but with a brief delay scheduled in 2014.

        • ### ODT Online Sat, 7 Sep 2013
          Cyclists and walkers to be separated
          By Vaughan Elder
          Conflict between pedestrians and cyclists on Dunedin cycleways has influenced a council decision to separate them on the next stage of the Otago Peninsula shared pathway. Projects engineer Evan Matheson said that, after consulting various parties, the council had decided to split the Ohinetu Point to Harington Point section, probably with a painted line. The new configuration would give both cyclists and pedestrians their “own space” and help avoid conflicts, he said. The popularity of the shared pathways on both sides of the peninsula had resulted in conflict and the council had taken this into account in making the decision.
          Read more

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s