1 Jul 2011

Council to fix sinkhole problem at historic village

8:39 pm on 1 July 2011

Rotorua District Council is working to reduce geothermal sink holes at the historic Whakarewarewa village.

It is upgrading utilities, including replacing the asphalt road that runs through the small settlement.

The council has found that the tarseal is inadequate for the village's roads because it traps heat and gas, which then dissolve into water and become acidic, eating into the rock, which eventually collapses.

The council has begun replacing the tarseal road with paving stones, which it hopes will reduce the livelihood of sink holes. Paving stones allow heat and gases to escape.

Residents at the village, where the people of Tūhourangi and Ngāti Wāhiao have lived for more than 200 years, say the new plan will help make the settlement safer.

The upgrades are expected to be completed before the end of July.