Golf course on way for Waihi Beach

By Betty Jeeves

Waihi Beach is to get a new community facility - a nine-hole chip and putt golf course on the council-owned Broadlands block.

In 2005 Waihi Beach Community Board held a meeting where 30-40 people attended to hear plans for another golf course after the previous one had closed. Although a steering committee was formed the project foundered.

Late last year the community board called for nominations to form a new steering committee to resurrect the proposal. This committee is getting plans together to begin pushing the project forward.

Community board chairman Murray Craig says the area to be used for the golf course is rolling grassland and he and the committee are mindful of their obligations to the overall site.

"We have to be conscious the whole time that it's a stormwater retention area. We are planning mounded tees and greens and we accept that the fairways will go under water from time to time.

"We also have to consider two hectares of environmental wetlands and this will also be developed," Murray says.

Around the perimeter of the block a walkway of more than a kilometre has already been formed. It is used by children and adults, walking and cycling, so another objective for the development is maintaining the access for children who need to get to school from Citrus Ave and The Crescent - a much safer route than walking by the roadside.

Waihi Beach Environment Society and the environment section of the Regional Council are interested in the development of the wetlands area.

"Our strong committee will be seconding enthusiastic locals who will be partners in the operation of the project, and our approaches to council have already been positive," Murray says.

He feels the project is long overdue and will not only be a positive for locals but also the area as a whole for tourism opportunities.

"It will be great for Waihi Beach," Murray says.

Development is planned within the next six to 12 months.

Currently the committee is getting together a memorandum of understanding, and will make a presentation to Western Bay of Plenty District Council's Operational Services Committee in Tauranga on December 6.

This concept design of the Broadlands entrance to the Wetlands Golf Course has been drawn by 'Outer Spaces'.


- Bay of Plenty Times

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