Things are heating up at Waitārere Beach.
The old Levin-Waitārere Beach surf club carpark is about to be fitted out with new public toilet facilities, outdoor showers, a picnic area, a new concrete footpath, carpark resurfacing, and new parking line markings once the work is completed.
The upgrade was financed with a $500,000 grant from Horowhenua District Council’s Better Off funding, which allowed for additional works not included in the original plans and funding for the rebuild of the new $3.2 million Waitārere Beach Surf Life Saving community facility nearby.
It includes upgrades to the parking facility, public toilets and infrastructure, landscaping of the area, the removal of exotic species, and native planting.
The work would give a facelift to amenities for a beach community that swells in number during the summer months. Mayor Bernie Wanden said he loved a day at the beach, as did many others in the district and beyond.
“These big projects will solidify Waitārere Beach’s reputation as one of New Zealand’s hottest spots to visit, especially in summer,” he said.
Mayor Wanden said once the works were fully completed it with further enhance the beach’s reputation.
“Waitārere Beach is much loved and visited by thousands of people each year. We are excited to upgrade the carpark to add to this positive experience for locals and visitors alike. Thank you for your patience while work is undertaken to take this space to the next level,” he said.
While the new Waitārere Beach Surf Life Saving community facility is due to open within weeks, the additional work that began last month on the carpark upgrade isn’t expected to be completed until the end of summer.
To keep disruption to a minimum this summer, the carpark will remain open with sections closed as different parts of the area were upgraded.
The existing public toilets are now closed and will be relocated to a new site in late 2023, although there were public toilets available at the Waitārere Beach Domain further up the road.
The recycling station at the carpark will also remain open during the construction period.
Demolition of the old surf club will begin soon. The earthquake-prone building had become run down and no longer fit for purpose.
The new community facility, which can host up to 200 people, will support surf life saving patrol, rescue operations and training.
Meanwhile, the new Surf Life Saving Club facility is equipped with:
· A patrol tower or watch room
· Training and beach education rooms for junior surf development and youth beach safety education which are open to school groups, the public and members of the club
· Kitchen and facilities to accommodate up to 200 people for community related events that closely align with surf life saving
· Changing rooms, toilets and showers
· First aid room
· Storage facilities for the Surf Life Saving Club’s rescue and training equipment
· Other features include a deck, patio, barbecue area, outside rinse showers and a wash-down forecourt.
Council contractor Homestead Construction began the work on the project in November 2022.
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