West Harbour Recreation Trail —Devastation caused to Rotary project

The three-year $200,000 West Harbour Recreation Trail project by the Rotary Club of Dunedin aims to beautify the edges of a 3km section of the cycleway-walkway, from the Otago Boat Harbour to Maia.

On May 26, a Friday afternoon, two Rotarians turned up at the boat harbour end of the Trail to set out the location of new exercise equipment for public use (in preparation for a June 10 working bee) – the next phase of the harbourside project. The men were astounded to find a council contractor, ostensibly there to repair the harbour wall, running heavy machinery across the mown green strip, seriously damaging the designated public amenity area.

While Rotary’s West Harbour Recreation Trail is a council approved project, and the extended site receives maintenance from Taskforce Green, the DCC had completely failed to advise and coordinate with Rotary before earthworks commenced for repair of the seawall. How does this happen ??!

Not such a bad job until you look westward, other side of the orange safety nets:

DCC Webmap – West Harbour Recreation Trail (damaged section)

Apparently, DCC has assured Rotary that the damage will be put right by the contractor. However, because of no drying for some time Rotary’s scheduled work at this site is on hold (at least a five month delay).

Rotarians had raised funds from the public to carry out the project.

One of the Rotarians said he was ‘incandescent with rage’ over it – and did not often get incandescent!!

On Tuesday (May 30) I visited the area to take photographs.

This is yet another example of council ineptitude where the left hand doesn’t know what the right hand’s doing. The council’s lack of oversight and the resulting damage may necessitate deeper foundations for the exercise equipment than Rotary had anticipated and budgeted. Their working bee planned for June 10 will be reduced in scale, with only installation of exercise equipment at Ravensbourne Footbridge taking place. The working bees for July and August have been cancelled as the site won’t be in a fit state to work on. Timing of the provision of barbeque facilities as part of the landscaping project is also affected.

There is the Huge Irony that Rotary have only just been awarded 1st Place by Keep Dunedin Beautiful, for their work on the recreation trail. The award came with a $100 cash prize.

Thankfully, say Rotarians, the damage wasn’t done until after the Trees for Babies planting was done on Mother’s Day (14 May).

The Keep Dunedin Beautiful Awards “celebrate and honour the people of Dunedin who are committed to beautifying their city and caring for their environment through volunteer action”.

“Each Autumn, in partnership with Rotary Dunedin, Keep Dunedin Beautiful organises tree plantings for babies and other family members in city reserves. Trees for Babies is a long-term native tree-planting project where family members can celebrate the birth of a child or any significant family milestone. It also contributes to a native re-vegetation project in a city reserve.”

Related Post and Comment:
7.8.15 Dunedin Rotary Club | West Harbour Recreation Trail

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr

This post is offered in the public interest.


Filed under Business, Construction, Cycle network, DCC, Democracy, Design, Dunedin, Economics, Education, Finance, Health & Safety, Infrastructure, Name, New Zealand, People, Pet projects, Project management, Property, Public interest, Resource management, Site, Sport, Tourism, Town planning, Travesty, Urban design, What stadium

9 responses to “West Harbour Recreation Trail —Devastation caused to Rotary project

  1. Kleinefeldmaus

    Your photographs are enough to make a saint blush with rage – so I wondered how ‘incandescent’ one could get.
    I did a little ‘trial run’ with one of my mates to see.

  2. Elizabeth

    I hear the Otago Daily Times is onto the story now….

  3. Elizabeth

    [This is strong opinion – should the council be in any doubt.]

    In the old days pay would be docked and jobs lost. This time it seems DCC merely grits its teeth and moves on inaudibly from the very ‘public’ scouring and defacement of a community-led beautification project —with DCC refraining to issue a Public Apology to the Rotary Club of Dunedin through the media.

    The ODT article is somewhat underbowled.

    Mr Richard Saunders has (again) had to front for others’ incompetence in stakeholder consultation, project timeline management and contract supervision. —Here’s hoping the staff responsible (including consents monitoring staff) are treated like the top soil, with a few rocks lobbed beneath.

    DCC OWES Rotary.


    At Facebook:

  4. Elizabeth

    [click to enlarge]
    Graphic by Douglas Field dated 18.8.12

  5. Anonymous

    When they dredged the marina area, they just dumped the spoil on the ground beside the marina adjacent to the cycleway.

  6. Hype O'Thermia

    How does anyone, even the thickest casual minimum-waged labourer without any kind of “diploma” from any lame-ass “academy”, fail to notice that a place is a tidy mowed lawn kind of area with a picnic table – i.e. looks like a place already for people to walk, play and sit?
    So why did anyone with sufficient intellectual function to be entrusted with heavy machinery go and ugly-up this recreational area? That’s like when hoons “borrow” a car and drive it all over a sports ground so it can’t be used for weeks.

    Reasonable communication would have been good, but DCC isn’t famous for timely relevant communication.

    That’s why I say, somebody please ask the driver what s/he was thinking. Didn’t s/he think, “Do they really want me to churn up all this tidy place so people can’t even get to the picnic table without getting mud halfway up their legs?”

  7. Elizabeth

    Or did DCC tell the contractor using heavy machinery that s/he could run over the grass ‘because it’s just grass, doesn’t matter, so why not do a loop-de-loop too round the picnic tables and donated park bench too, while you’re at it’ (no one will ever find out!).

  8. Tom Robertson

    @ Hype O’Thermia June 7
    Thickness aside, the issue was that the DCC is responsible for the management of this reserve. It was also well aware that Rotary was developing the recreational facilities there because the DCC asked them to – that’s why.
    And then, when members of Rotary came to set out the area for its next working B on Saturday (for this, as pictured below and other items of fitness equipment) they were greeted with the mayhem seen in the pictures in this post above.

    Picture supplied by Rotary member:

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