Havelock North residents say a new mountain bike track in Tainui Reserve will put residents' safety at risk, but mountain bikers believe a track that separates them from walkers will keep everyone safer.

The track is one of four under construction in Havelock North. The other three are located in Tanner, Tauroa and Hikanui reserves.

Resident Sally Anderson said she had almost been knocked over while walking by several young mountain bikers using the partially constructed tracks in Tainui Reserve about two weeks ago.

She said they passed her on both sides as they came off the mountain bike track and on to a shared part of the path, while she was walking her dog.


"These young lads were using it right on rush hour, in the evening."

HDC's Parks and Property Services manager Colin Hosford said the tracks would be closed until they were completed and adequate signage had been put in place.

Long time resident Jessica Maxwell said she had logged a "trifecta of formal complaints" with the Hastings District Council including allegations of health and safety breaches by the council regarding the tracks in Tainui and Hikanui reserves.

In a Talking Point on page 14 today, Maxwell outlines her opposition to the tracks and why she feels Tainui Reserve should be a "mountain bike free reserve" similar to Keirunga.

Although the tracks had been flagged as a possibility for future development publicly by the Hastings District Council four years ago, she said there should have been further public consultation before construction started as a number of submitters had opposed the idea of bike tracks when they were flagged.

The designer of the new tracks, Hilton Taylor, said the process had been above board.

"They've been in the plans since 2015, on the council website, all available."

He said part of the problem is the process has taken so long that people have forgotten about the consultation which took place.


He said building the tracks gave mountain bikers a better option, and would remove them from the walking tracks, keeping everyone safer.

However, he said mountain bikers had as much right to use the reserves as other users.

Craig Thew, manager of asset management at HDC, said submitters requested new cycling tracks and improved walking tracks in the four Havelock North reserves during the reserves management plan process.

"Council is aware of the views from various users of the public reserves, the proposed developments should assist in providing opportunities for all users.

"It is important for council that these public spaces can cater for a range of uses of the community, not just one specific group."

Council was not funding the building of the track, but is providing signage.