Community, Council

Pedestrians on a firmer footing

Work to make Blenheim’s pavements safer should be completed in time for Christmas. Photo: Matt Brown.

Slippery-when-wet pavers in Blenheim will soon be a thing of the past as plans to make them safer get underway soon.

Rather than replace potentially perilous pavers, Marlborough District Council bosses put forward a re-sanding plan.

All glazed clay stones will also be re-sanded and daubed with a more slip-resistant coat.

The work should be done in time for Christmas.

The move follows complaints from pedestrians who have reported fall related injuries.

Assets and services manager Richard Coningham says the pavers needed to be more “slip resistant”.

Installed in many towns and cities during the 1990’s and 2000’s, the walkways had been treated in the past.

But improved methods mean the pavers are ripe for a makeover.

“ … we now have access to improved treatments which will provide longer term resistance.

“While the treatment option is not a permanent fix and is likely to need reapplying every four to six years; it is the most cost effective”, Richard says.

The clay footpaths will need replacing in 20 years at a replacement cost of about $2 million, Richard says.

Treating the problem now and replacing later was a more “cost effective” option, he says.

“As most of the clay footpath paving in Blenheim and Picton’s CBDs is more than 20 years old, it’s likely that it will be replaced within the next 20 years, making treating now and replacing in the future the most cost-effective option.

“We know a number of people in Blenheim and Picton have suffered injuries after slipping over on the pavers, especially when it is wet.

“It’s great that we have a solution to reduce this from occurring in future”, he says.

Work in Picton is scheduled to get underway next year.

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