Te Rapa Road Streams

Te Rapa Road and its side roads act as a headwater stream, which feeds streams that empty out into the Waikato River. By design these roads catch all the road surface pollutants and send them directly into sunless drains that lead to the river. The only substantial bit of daylit stream that allows some ‘nutrient and pollution removal, groundwater recharge, and flood mitigation’ is behind Awatere Rest Home and Village (formerly Trevellyn) from Beerescourt Road to the river.

Hamilton City Council is the largest land owner in the above transit catchments. Fourteen percent of the land area is roads, many sealed from boundary to boundary with almost no permeable surfaces.  Where there are permeable surfaces, many of these are raised, so they don’t allow rain water to pond and absorb into the ground to replenish the water table. The long term plan budgets over $29m for ‘Drainage (kerb and channel) renewals’ (2021-31 Long Term Plan Vol.1 p25). If ‘renewals’ are used to rebuild like for like, we will never move to a more sustainable stormwater catchment system.

Should the council allowed Te Rapa road to be a highly urbanised mixed residential/employment Transit corridor, it is also possible to dream of adding a green tram/bus infrastructure.

Justifying expensive change in the short term is not likely to happen, but many small changes have the potential to give large-scale benefits over the long term. If there was a tree planting plan now, we could have a tree boulevard in place within twenty years.

Category: News

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