MEDIA STATEMENT - BLUE SPRING / TE WAIHOU WALKWAY CLOSED TEMPORARILY
Released: Tuesday 31 October 2023
South Waikato District Council is closing the popular Blue Spring / Te Waihou Walkway. A rockfall in June made the Walkway impassable from the Leslie Road end. Since June, visitors have been using the Whites Road (SH28) carpark entrance to gain access to the Walkway, but this is causing an overflow of cars and significant traffic/pedestrian safety issues on a busy state highway.
Shane Anderson, South Waikato District Council’s Acting Executive Manager - Delivery says that public safety is the reason for the Council’s decision to close the Walkway.
“After the rockfall occurred we implemented immediate safety measures, and the Walkway was closed from the Leslie Road carpark entrance. We have subsequently decided to close the Walkway completely so Council and our partners can carry out a thorough assessment of the respective roles of stakeholders involved. It is important to establish ownership, land tenure and if they are still appropriate for the sustainable management of the Walkway and Blue Spring,” he said.
“Council will be installing fencing and signage at Whites Road and Leslie Road advising the public of the closure. We ask the public to stay away from the area for their own safety,” he said.
The Walkway will close fully to the public on Monday 13 November. Fencing works will be underway from Thursday 9 November.
The good news is that the Walkway will re-open, but a lot of work needs to be done before that can happen. Council continues to work with landowners, Raukawa, the Department of Conservation and Waikato Regional Council on long term solutions.
This closure is not permanent - we plan to have the Blue Spring / Te Waihou Walkway open again by November 2024. In the meantime, tourists can explore the other beautiful sites in the South Waikato. For more information on these please visit www.swnz.co.
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