The cost of disposing of a pile of used tyres - an eyesore which has been on the radar of Horizons Regional Council for seven years - has fallen on its new owner, James McManaway of JDM Earthmoving.
A Wellington company has agreed to remove them - a job which could cost more than $12,000.
"It's not a cheap exercise," McManaway said.
He bought nearly 3ha at 77 Brunswick Rd about a month ago. He wants to base his earthmoving business there and the zone is suitable.
"We are trying to do the right thing. The neighbours have been ecstatic that we are cleaning the place up."
In 2012 and 2013 Farmcorp was leasing the site and using it to store end-of-life tyres (ELT). About 4000 were there when Horizons Regional Council asked them to stop and to apply for resource consent.
They stopped adding to the pile, but did not apply for resource consent, and ended their lease on the land.
Its owner, John Gordon Abbott, has owned a lot of property in Whanganui and some in Waverley. Horizons told him and his New Zealand agent that he had to remove the tyres if the lease ended.
Instead the land was put on the market and the cost of getting rid of the tyres has fallen on the new owner.
McManaway said the land was in "pretty bad disrepair" when he bought it. He has cleared a space so that tyres can be removed, and farmers have taken some for their own use.
He has a "gentleman's agreement" with Wellington company Tyre Disposal Services to take away the tyres. He hopesthey will all be gone in six months.
Tyre Disposal Services owner Craig Shaw said his business will truck the tyres to Wellington, where they will be baled and exported to India or Malaysia.
In India truck tyres are made into conveyor belts. The oil in car tyres is extracted and used to fuel furnaces.
New Zealand accumulates five million ELTs a year, and only 25 per cent get recycled, the Tyrewise website says. The rest go to landfill or are illegally dumped or stockpiled, where they become a fire hazard.
New Zealand is working toward making ELTs a "priority product" and establishing a stewardship programme for them. When that is done, people storing tyres will pay a bond to council to cover the cost of clean-up if they leave or go broke.
The programme is expected to be in place within the next 12 months.