Topic: Environment

Post-flood erosion raises concerns at Umupuia urupā

By Talisa Kupenga
  • Auckland

The dry weather is aiding recovery efforts on the Maraetai coast, where flooding cut power, closed roads, and eroded parts of the coastline. Umupuia marae says the main concern is post-storm road erosion which nearly reached the border of their ancient burial ground.

The sun shines a light on post-flood progress along the Maraetai coast.

Umupuia Marae trustee Laurie Beamish says, "[I'm] loving it. It's drying everything up. The māra kai [garden] is humming the bees are humming and life is good when the sun is shining."

Beamish says assistance has been great following the floods, but post-storm road erosion gives a reason for concern.

"We've initiated some contact with Auckland Transport and Auckland Council parks and reserves. To have a hui that talks about the proximity of our koiwi (bones) our tupuna (ancestors) in the burial grounds right next to the road so that the wāhi tapu (sacred area) is not compromised with any rebuild of the road." 

Auckland Transport says right now it's focus is preventing slips to open both lanes on affected roads. Although assessments are ongoing it estimates repairs in the Clevedon Maraetai areas to be upwards of $1million. 

Beamish says, "In the meantime, it is about the safety of our manuhiri (visitors) the people of Auckland using the road, and our marae and our urupā."

Roadworkers here say about 100 people use this road every hour. Beamish hopes the worst weather has passed so the road ceases to recede.