New stormwater system for Lyell creek

We have been working with Kaikōura District Council and the Love the Lyell Governance Group to design and secure a stormwater filtering system for Lyell Creek/Waikōau.

The project will help reduce contaminants from urban run-off sites and improve water quality in Lyell Creek/Waikōau.

The $18,000 project will be funded with $3,000 from the Kaikōura Water Zone Committee’s ‘on the ground actions for freshwater’ fund.

The remaining is funded by Kaikōura District Council (KDC) and their contractor Brian Perry Civil (BPC) who will be undertaking their work. Downer, Fulton Hogan, HEB and Higgins, as part of the North Canterbury Transport and Infrastructure Recovery alliance (NCTIR) have also contributed funding.

Shared approach creates positive outcomes

Love the Lyell group member Naomi Ambrose said she is pleased with how collaborative the process has been.

“By working together, we are able to share the cost and resources, while creating positive outcomes for the community and Lyell Creek/Waikōau,” she said.

“I joined Love the Lyell so that I could gain a better understanding of how to protect our waterways and be involved in coming up with an action plan.

"It’s great to build on the past work of the Group and progress towards some outcomes that are visible to the community and will have a direct benefit to the environment.”

BPC will carry out work to install a system to remove contaminants before stormw

BPC will install a system to remove contaminants before stormwater enters the creek.

Plans come together

Kaikōura zone delivery manager Kevin Heays said it is a great initiative that will help reduce contaminants from urban run-off sites and improve Lyell Creek/Waikōau water quality.

“The group raised urban infrastructure and urban stormwater as one of the biggest challenges when it came to water quality in the lower catchment, so filtering stormwater became the most immediate focus,” Heays said.

Staff have been working with KDC’s 3 Waters engineer Bruce Apperley and rebuild manager William Loppe, to support the group with designs and planning for the stormwater filtering system.

The system will be placed in the drain that receives stormwater runoff from Churchill Street, Ludstone Road, and other nearby streets.

"The drain where the system is going covers quite a good chunk of central urban Kaikōura, so it will be great to have something in place to keep the nasties out of the creek," Heays said.

Potential for more filtering systems

The filtering system is designed to slow and filter the flow from stormwater drains during normal weather conditions and allow free flow when water levels are above average. This ensures flow does not back up within the system and flood drains on properties or on the road.

The inlets will be strengthened and planting will be carried out on the side of the drains. These will provide aesthetic values for the recreational area adjacent to the drain while providing further water filtering and quality improvements.

If successful, the project could be a benchmark for other sites along Waikōau and could provide a template for other areas in the region.

Betty Tait with spade

Betty Tait, 96, at the Love the Lyell community planting day

Following a refresh of the Group earlier this year, Love the Lyell has most recently been working on priorities for Waikōau restoration and enhancement.

Moving forward, the Group's focus will be the lower creek area, with weed control and planting from the State Highway 1 (SH1) bridge to the creek mouth on the coast.

Work on the filtering system is set to begin any day, with plans to beautify the pump station located next to SH1, welcoming people to the Lyell Creek/Waikōau Reserve, with history of the area and information on planting species and purpose.

Love the Lyell group and staff will brainstorm possible options for the pump station at their next meeting, before engaging with local stakeholders to ensure they capture the right messaging and imagery.

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