Two popular walking spots in Whangarei are both facing closures this month, but for two vastly different reasons.

All three tracks in Whangarei's central city Parihaka Reserve will be upgraded one after the other, starting next week.

The drainage and surfaces will be improved, box steps will be installed and the tracks will be widened and levelled. The Drummond track is up first, with work in the reserve expected to continue into winter.

The Whangarei District Council will erect signs at the entrance to Mair Park to let users know which track is closed and what alternatives there are.


Meanwhile public access to Whau Valley Dam will be closed for about six weeks while pine trees on a small piece of council-owned land next to the dam are felled.

Council commercial portfolio manager Mike Hibbert said work is planned to start in mid to late February, but is heavily dependent on the weather.

A total area of 6.1ha will be harvested, with an expected yield of 3900 tonnes of wood.

The area will then be replanted in native trees that comply with the New Zealand Emissions Trading Scheme. The logging will be carried out by a bulldozer, with a series of tracks created in the hillside to allow the trees to be removed.

The 700m boundary fence will be removed and then replaced at the end of the harvest.

A temporary access road and a loading platform for logging equipment and trucks will be constructed close to the dam entrance gate. A second loading platform will be constructed close to the carparking area at the top of the dam.

These will be removed and the land regrassed once the work is complete.

Mr Hibbert said the council is working closely with the contractors and water services team to ensure there are no risks to the water quality.


A post-harvest clean-up will take place to remove any leftover debris from the popular site.