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Resilient River Communities

Wairau River Flood Protection Scheme

Marlborough District Council

This project will create 15 job and will take 2-3 years to complete. Funding will provide additional major river edge protection upgrade works of the Wairau River in the vicinity of Blenheim.

This will include stopbank strengthening work in the area upstream from Renwick and beside the Council’s Southern Valleys Irrigation Scheme intake pond that is critical for supply to a large area of vineyards along the south bank of the Wairau River east from the Waihopai River confluence. 

The protection works are aimed at reducing the risk of flood spills as occurred in 1983 for much of the intensively developed lower floodplain of Marlborough including many hectares of vineyard, parts of Renwick and ultimately protection of Blenheim. 

The government funding will enable the timeline for this critical protection work to be significantly fast tracked. Implementation will involve significant contracting and material resources, including supply and placement of large armour rock rip-rap.

This work will include:

  • Construction of three new major strong head groynes and strengthening or altering a further five adjacent to 3.5km of Wairau River stopbanks and Council’s Southern Valleys Irrigation Scheme river intake.
  • Construction of a series of smaller intermediary groynes in between.
  • Total rock rip-rap placement in order of 20 – 40,000tonnes plus bulk fill placement to form groynes cores.
  • Realignment of at least 700m and up to 1,400m of stopbank.
  • Planting to replace lost buffer zone.
  • Enhancing the area that has open public access.