Bus tours were put on over the last couple of weeks for the benefit of the newly elected council members of the various major assets the council has between Otaki and Paekakariki. Yesterday’s 3.5 hour tour encompassed Paraparaumu and the major feature of interest for Waikanae people must be the (intended) 60-hectare Otaraua Park for which the development plan was adopted by the council last year and can be read here (17-page pdf). The map on page 6 is reproduced as a jpg below (click for the full view).
This is just beyond the south bank of the Waikanae River and the Te Arawai footbridge leads pretty much straight into it.
The new council could revisit this plan, of course, and the most controversial feature of it has to be the proposed bridge over the railway into the park from the Main Road as the road access otherwise is a little circuitous.
Some things such as drainage of the main playing field and tree plantings have happened already. Apparently, the Waikanae Football Club was unimpressed initially as “it’s not Waikanae”, but is now keen to be part of it. (That in turn raises the question — is the south bank of the river part of Waikanae or Paraparaumu? The answer may depend on parochial feelings.)
Other parts of the tour included the Aquatic Centre, the Otaihanga landfill, the Emergency Operations Centre, the sewerage treatment plant where there is also the dog pound and the abandoned car yard (probably not what would be considered a tourist scenic delight 🙂 ), the Mazengarb Reserve, MacLean Park and the Paraparaumu library, a nice building inside even if it looks like a fortress from the outside and a facility worth visiting.