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Upper Hutt Leader : November 30th 2011
4 UPPER HUTT LEADER, NOVEMBER 30, 2011 NEWS 4199137AA Barriers to Rimutaka railway By JIM CHIPP A steep climb faces the Rimutaka Heritage Railway Trust if it is to surmount the opposition to its Rimutaka Incline railway plan. The trust has applied to the Greater Wellington Regional Council for a concession to build and operate a steam railway between Maymorn in Upper Hutt and the old Rimutaka summit sta- tion, following the rail trail but a host of opposition has immedi- ately massed. Ultimately it wants to extend the line to Featherston. When trust members Murray King, Hugh McCracken and Ben Calcott presented their plan to the regional council cultural and social wellbeing committee on Wednesday several individuals and organisations voiced their opposition.Objections came from Cycle Aware Wellington, DOC, Hutt Cycling Network, Feather- ston s Fell Locomotive Museum and Hutt Valley Rotary Clubs. Mr King said the proposed attraction could attract 40,000 visitors a year. It would also build a new walkway and cycleway, and the railway would deviate away from a go-kart track and gliding club, which have facilities on the existing trail. The railway would cost about $13 million to build, of which the trust expected to raise $1 million. It would raise loans of $6 million, get $4 million from an un-named angel investor and the rest in grants and donations. Tom Halliburton of the Hutt Cycling Network said the route was a cycleway of national signifi- cance. One of the reasons is that it is the only way of cycling into the Wellington area. The alternatives were State Highway One or the Rimutaka Hill Road, neither of which were safe for cyclists. The trust proposed to build a new walkway-cycleway bypassing the tunnels, but it would ascend to greater heights and have a maxi- mum gradient of 12.5 per cent, which was impossible to climb on a bike. Graeme Jupp of the Fell Loco- motive Museum Society said the railway and the Rail Trail could not co-exist on the same trail. DOC Wellington manager Rob Stone said DOC supported the existing cycle trail. Wellington is relatively well- served with mountain bike tracks but there are very few places that are family-friendly. Cycle Aware Wellington spokes- man Alistair Smith said he was initially excited by the rail pro- posal until he discovered how steep the new trail would be, and he believed the costs had been underestimated. Positively Wellington Tourism head David Perks said his organ- isation was working to extend the National Cycleway project into Wellington and it was expected to bring lasting economic and environmental benefits. Visitor numbers to the Rimu- taka Rail Trail had increased 73 per cent in the last five years, he said. Nationally rail trails were attracting international 51,000 visitors each year for an average 45-day stay. Positively Wellington Tourism did not oppose the proposal but cautioned against taking one thing away and replacing it with something else that was untested. Hutt Valley Rotary Club mem- ber Robin Maud said the rail trail and the Hutt river trail made up a 50km off-road cycleway from Wairarapa to Petone. If the proposal is accepted, we believe it will deprive the public of the free access to walk, run or cycle through a wilderness heri- tage route, he said. Nessa Lynch, speaking on behalf of mountain bikers and said the rail trail had been her introduction to the sport. Its gentle gradients were a rarity in the Wellington region, she said. GWRC will consider the appli- cation on December 15. Concerns addressed, page 11 The First Name in Good Gardens Specials valid till 07/12/11 or while stocks last www.oderings.co.nz www.oderings.co.nz Not being members we cannot sell or redeem NGIA Gift Vouchers. Other Vouchers - Yes. Your Guarantee of quality is assured when you purchase plants grown and selected by Oderings. Darryn Odering Open 7 Days 8am - 5.30pm 1066 Fergusson Dr, Upper Hutt Ph: 939 1020 Cineraria Dwarf Mixed Excellent plant for a shady position. Bright flowers throughout summer. 4.29 299 PACK OF 9 Antirrhinum Double Mixed Very bright & showy double 'snapdragons'. Excellent garden plant or in pots. 4.29 329 PACK OF 9 Lavender Blue Mountain One of the best dwarf, dark blue English Lavenders. Myrtus Ugni 'NZ Cranberry'. Excellent fruiting shrub. Can be hedged. 13.99 999 EACH Phormium Evening Glow The best dwarf, red flax. Lovely contrast plant. A Family Business - Growing Since 1929 Miniature Cyclamen Lovely dainty pastel flowers. Excellent in pots. 13.99 999 EACH Gift Vouchers Any amount - no expiry date. Redeemable at all reputable garden centres throughout NZ. Aster Milady Mixed An array of dazzling mixed flowers. Plant in a sunny position. Lovely for picking. 4.29 329 PACK OF 9 Verbena Named Colours & Mixed Beautiful summer bedding plant with bright showy flowers. 4.29 299 PACK OF 9 5.29 429 PACK OF 6 17.99 12 99 EACH Millet Purple Spear Lovely contrast foliage plant for the summer garden. 5.29 299 PACK OF 6 ODERINGS-UH
November 23rd 2011
December 7th 2011