After years of wrangling, work has started today on an $11.4m stopbank that will dramatically cut the risk of Lower Hutt's city centre suffering a major flood.
Stage One of the Boulcott / Hutt Stopbank project began this afternoon, with an official sod-turning ceremony. The Greater Wellington regional council is building the stopbank through the former Boulcott and Hutt golf courses.
The project has been controversial.The work dramatically affected the former Boulcott and Hutt golf courses. Boulcott was closed when its land was designated for the stopbanks by the regional council. The two merged to become the Boulcott Heritage Golf Club.
Mr Wallace acknowledged the impact had been ''huge'' and thanked club members for working with the regional council. A major failure of the banks could result in approximately $1.6 billion worth of damage to the city centre.
The new stopbank is designed to handle a one-in-440-year flood. The project should be finished in September 2014.
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