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Tourism Infrastructure Funding to progress cyclone repair projects

Puketapu Park med

Tourism funding from the Government has been provisionally approved today, enabling Hastings District Council to get on with four projects.

The projects are new toilet blocks for Tōmoana Showgrounds and repairs to Council-owned Haumoana Domain and Puketapu Park following cyclone damage. Funding to repair cyclone damage within Te Mata Park has also been approved.

Hastings Mayor Sandra Hazlehurst said the continued funding of projects in Hastings by Government was very welcome.

“It is critically important that we continue to repair damage caused by February’s cyclone as quickly as possible by getting on with projects that contribute to the well-being of our residents and attract visitors to our district.”

At Tōmoana Showgrounds, which attract thousands of people each year to a wide variety of events, the plan is to build a semi-permanent, fit-for-purpose amenity block including toilets and showers.

This would improve the facilities to enable more frequent events and activities that would attract more visitors to the region.

During Cyclone Gabrielle the floodwaters washed through the entire Puketapu Park, reaching heights of four to five metres in places and causing considerable damage to some areas. The plan was to use this funding to help restore the park to its pre-cyclone state – using fit-for-purpose equipment with resilience at the forefront.

At Haumoana Domain high sea swells and weather events often cause gravel to be washed onto Domain Rd preventing vehicles from getting into and out of the domain.

The funding would support building an all-weather vehicle access road for use when the existing one was compromised, and would improve traffic flow all year round. Some funding would also be used to improve drainage and extend the stormwater retention area to prevent surface flooding.

Te Mata Park is the key recreation and visitor attraction for Hawke’s Bay, and Council and the Trust that manages it use a joint funding approach.

Cyclone Gabrielle, however, has caused severe damage to the park which has put pressure on the Trust’s finances as it seeks to repair the features enjoyed by locals and out of town visitors alike.

To help keep the built amenities operating at a good level for visitors, this funding would go towards providing a reliable supply of potable water and sewer service for the Peak House building and the public toilets at the visitor carpark.

Mrs Hazlehurst said assisting Te Mata Park Trust to repair damage to the iconic visitor attraction and repairing damage to parks predominately used by locals were equally important.

“I know that across the district there is much work to be done on every front and that everyone will have different priorities, but we must make the most of every opportunity that Government provides us. We are working with all of our partners to progress repairs to our region as soon as possible.”

Council would now work on fulfilling the requirements of Government to enable a contract for the funding to be agreed.

1 September 2023

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