Park revamp work starts soon

By Katie Holland

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Construction of a youth space at Koutu's Karenga Park will finally begin this month.

Rotorua District Council parks and recreation manager Garry Page has confirmed the contract to develop the park was last week awarded to Ronayne Construction, after a tender process.

The Rotorua company also built two other parks, in Western Heights and Fordlands, as part of the council's Youth Spaces Project.

Mr Page said Ronayne Construction would take possession of the site on January 21 and would have a 12-week time frame for completion. Assuming paperwork and insurances are in place, construction should begin immediately meaning the park would be completed by April 15.

Development of the park was first proposed and discussed with Koutu residents in late 2010. Construction was originally scheduled to be completed by the end of this month but was delayed because of wet weather and flooding.

Mr Page said parts of the park had been below lake level, so it needed to be raised to improve drainage.

"We've built it up by over 1.5m, 2m in some places," he said. "We were making sure we got the levels rights with the fill that was available."

He said while some local residents might be "a bit disappointed" construction had taken a bit longer than planned it was important the council got things right from the beginning rather than rushing into it.

Mr Page said the park would include a netball court, two half-court basketball courts, skateboarding and BMX facilities and playing fields. There will be a playground, seating and artwork.

- Rotorua Daily Post

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