A report will go to the Vincent Community Board next month to consider the next steps for the Half Mile Reserve near Alexandra.

The Central Otago District Council’s proposal in 2021 to remove wilding pines from the reserve received a reaction from some residents and neighbours to the site.

Wilding pines are widely recognised as a pest species that impact on rural productivity, cause modification of natural ecosystems, and compromise landscape and amenity.

Central government and the Otago Regional Council have provided significant funding over a period of four years to address the issue in the region.

In response to community concerns, and as a responsible landowner, the council also committed funding through the 2021-31 long-term plan for the removal of wilding pines in a number of sites identified as posing high risk of spreading seed.

The council held a drop-in session in November for community feedback on a proposed concept plan for what the reserve could look like following the removal of the trees.

Council staff have analysed the feedback and the analysis will form part of a report on options for the future use of the reserve, to be considered by the Vincent Community Board at its March 22 meeting.

Council parks and recreation manager Gordon Bailey said the council understood the Half Mile reserve is an important amenity area for residents.

“Our goal is to ensure that people continue to enjoy using the reserve for generations to come, while adhering to our obligations as a responsible landowner.

“These obligations include the eradication of pests that cause widespread destruction to the environment.”