Taking care of trees on worksite

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Two sequoias at the west end of Roys Bay are being given care and attention as construction begins on Wanaka Watersports Trust’s new facility.

An eight-page tree management plan will be followed during construction and arborist Ben McFarlanehas been engaged by the trust to monitor the process.

The trust had “definitely gone the extra mile” with its level of protection, Mr McFarlane said.

“It’s a sensitive site . . . we are doing everything we can to make sure that they come through the process in the best health.”

A 10 to 15m semicircle of mulch had been laid around the trees to protect the roots.

“It is a bit of a barrier, a bit of a sponge, really.”

There was a good distance from the trunks to where construction would be taking place, Mr McFarlane said.

“So what they are doing is leaving all those feeding roots and all that intact, they are not interfering with those.”

Every root would be “looked at and talked about” between the arborist and the construction team.

“If we need to go around it, under it, over it, that’s how we will do it.”

Site manager Hemi Karamaena said that everyone on the construction team was aware of the importance of the site.

“Everyone involved on the site have been quite vigilant with the process, and they know that a lot of the groundwork is where we are going to spend a lot of time,” Mr Karamaena said.

“It had definitely been drummed into us as the main concern”.

Trustee Nic Blennerhasset said protecting the sequoias by the site was a “huge consideration”.

“It feels fantastic to be at the start of construction. It’s been a long haul and now we are at the fun part.

The trust always “knew it was a big deal” to have a new building on the lakefront. The yacht club had been built more than 25 years ago, and the scout den built about 1988.

People might be worried during the construction phase, but Ms Blennerhasset hoped many would enjoy using the building once it was completed.

“Once it is in place we think that people will really love it.

“We hope it will be a real asset for the community.”