Haast-Hollyford Rd draws critics
Wed, 09 Jan 2013 6:19p.m.
By Hamish Clark
West Coast developers want to build a road through the Hollyford Valley to link the coast with Fiordland.
The road would cut travel time by more than four hours, and locals hope it would benefit tourism. The inland road would go from Haast Pass along the Hollyford Valley, past Lake Wilmont and Lake Alabaster and join to the road to Milford Sound.
The Hollyford Valley is clean and green – just helicopters and trampers get to see it. Now the road through the wilderness could open it up for all to marvel.
The Haast-Hollyford Rd has always existed on a map, but never been built. It was tried in 1936.
“You are going through some of the most magnificent country in the world up here and we think it will for tourism operators sit pretty nicely,” says Westland District Property Ltd chairman Durham Havill.
The highway would complete the South Island Loop and the route would be a popular attraction.
The toll road will travel down through the Hollyford Valley where it is beautiful and pristine, out to Milford Rd. It would cut the travelling time between Haast and Milford Sound by four hours but it would open up an area rarely seen by tourists let alone by locals.
Mr Havill has been trying to drum up support from local councils.
“Our council sees it as positive but we haven't made any decisions on whether we support it or not,” says Southland district mayor Frana Cardno.
Forest and Bird want it to remain a hidden part of New Zealand.
“Just because something exists we should all go to it – on that sort of logic we should be putting a gondola on the top of Mount Cook because a lot of people can't go to Mount Cook,” says Kevin Hackwell of Forest and Bird. “There are some places you leave alone.”
The road would cost more than $200 million and would be privately funded with a toll of $20 a person to cover the cost.
“I believe in three years you would have a state highway,” says Mr Havill.
First they need resource consent. If that’s approved the road could finally become a reality 130 years after it was first conceived.
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3/02/2013 2:00:26 p.m.
What happens to Gunns Camp ?,will it be preserved or will it be demolished for a crass hotel.
18/01/2013 8:44:59 a.m.
Robin Long wrote:
The people arguing for the construction of this road want it to happen so that the area can be 'opened up' for all to see because it is such a special place. Has it not occurred to them that the only thing really special about the area is that there is no road? If there was a road it would be just like any other road which passes through West Coast bush (e.g. the Haast Pass Road). Those people who do make the effort to go there are rewarded with the experience of visiting one of the few remaining places which have not yet been spoiled by roads, and to take away this opportunity would not be fair.
New Zealand is supposed to be clean and green and look after its environment. Given this, are we really prepared to let an overseas company spoil one of our few remaining pristine areas of native forest just so that they can make money out of it? This area was put into national park a long time ago to protect it, what right do we have to go and change that now? Surely by now our country has learnt to respect the environment above the potential gains of an overseas business!
14/01/2013 1:16:33 p.m.
Pie in the sky---Those who think the making of a road will regenerate bush have been indoors for too long, they obviously have never seen trees drop infront of them & rivers rise rapidly. Road avenues need to be cleared of dangerous trees not have trees regenerate, it may seem a small distance suggested, about but the widening road on either side is not for your average tourist nor for their hired vehicle..
There are so many roads in NZ where you have to go back the same way.. This is west coast greed in the making not pro Te Anau as STEAMINGMADDD states
12/01/2013 11:16:59 p.m.
Good on Yah Durham best thing for the West Coast & Te Anau as people will end up staying a night there . Plus it has to be Good for New Zealand's Environment with the Saving on Fuel of 4 hours less travel per Vehicle travelling to Milford . Hope it happens soon, an as far as disturbing the Bush it will regenerate quickly within 5 years or so & it's only under 80km of New Road . It's going to be hard for Southland District to get in behind the Job as it will be a Hot Potatoe .
11/01/2013 2:30:26 p.m.
Chris G wrote:
Those in favour of ripping up more forest from the western side of the south island should consider themselves living in the dark ages. Your dreaming if you think the money suggested from the outside source would be enough for such undertakings, this price would not even build the many large bridges required for access over the many rivers in these remote parts. We need these forests to remain isolated, more roads equal more pollution, pests & more invasion of the freedom campers. People come here for the remote feeling with less people, which unfortunately we are slowly changing thru selfish small- minded greed.
The recent weather bombs are natures warning.
Dream on as we all do, as far as what is right & what one should interferr with.
10/01/2013 1:12:04 p.m.
Arthur Rowntree wrote:
What a wonderful idea. This makes so much more sense than a tunnel or gondola currently being considered. Hackwell and his The greeny mates have held the West Coast (and NZ) to ransom for too long. They would prefer to see unemployment than a vibrant sustainable tourist industry. Why dont the promoters seek local capital? I have a $100k to put in to make this a reality. A better investment than being sucked in by parasitic sharebrokers to put funds into the likes of Credit Sails, South Canterbury Finance etc.
10/01/2013 12:48:27 p.m.
yep, get on with it!
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