January 05, 2022
Te Araroa barge plan gets nod for next stage
Promoters of a proposed barging facility for Te Tairāwhiti hope further studies will answer the concerns of critics.
Te Araroa Barge Facility Working Group has been given the nod from Crown Infrastructure Partners to access $2 million from the ‘shovel ready projects fund’ earmarked for port infrastructure on the East Coast.
The decision has upset those promoting a competing project to build a multi-purpose wharf near Hicks Bay.
But Working Group secretary Tiwana Tibble says the project to build on Māori land near the Karakatuwhero River mouth is supported by a majority of hapū members who attended an information hui observed by Te Puni Kōkiri.
Tibble says preliminary reports indicate it can conform to the district plan and Tairāwhiti Resource Management Plan so there is a pathway to consent.
The new funding will be used for more environmental, economic and social reports.
“We’re committed to doing those reports and engaging more thoroughly with the community.
“People have talked about the facility increasing the beaching of whales. There is no evidence of that but over the next 12 months, we will be able to get expert advice and go back to the community to talk.”