Gravel roads not to be sealed

Shingle roads in the Darfield area won’t be tar-sealed because of the cost.

Mayor Sam Broughton told the Malvern Community Board that would be the case after it was raised at a board meeting last week.

The matter was raised by board member Karen Meares after members of the public had raised their issues with her.

Mrs Meares brought the road maintenance to the committee after people had gone to her to complain about how the roads were being managed in the icy weather.

Mrs Meares also acknowledged people have been having issues with dust on gravel roads.

“The roads are easier to manage if it hasn’t been sealed,” Mrs Meares said.

Mr Broughton said that if the road sealing was a community expectation it would mean an increase in rates.

He said the priorities of the district council are not on sealing the gravel road but on resealing and widening

Mrs Meares said: “We have to be realistic” when it comes to funding. “There are lots more things that require funding.”

The cost of sealing the gravel roads is between $100,000 and $200,000 per kilometre depending on the location of the road and the amount of work that needs to be done.

The district council is in charge of 1116km of unsealed road. Sealing all of them is a cost Mr Broughton said the district council cannot afford.