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Yesterday morning a conference of local bodies convened by the Waima-kanri-Ashley Water Supply Board was held at the Rangiora County Council office to 1 consider the question of substituting concrete culverts for fords," over the water-races oil the roads in the different counties (says the "Lyttelton Times"). There were present Messrs M. J. Dixon, D. (I. Matheson and J. McCormack (secretary) representing the Water Board; Mr F. Horrell, Rangiora County Council; Messrs H. J. Horrell and R. O. Dixon, Eyre County Council, and Messrs H. T. Cooper, A. Meyers, J. McCormack and H Gainsword, Oxford County Council. Mr M. J." Dixon/who presided, said the question they had met to discuss was of great importance, not only to their own districts, but to the whole of Canterbury. The advent of the motorcars had made the water-race fords a prominent question. The maintenance of the fords cost from £2 to £4 per annum each, and it was estimated'that £1 per annum woxild pay the interest on the outlay of a culvert. Whilst the culverts would be a great improvement in respect to motor-car traffic, they would also be much more economical than the fords. The cost of the construction of the culverts would have to be borne by the Water Board and the main object of the conference was to ascertain what width of culvert would be required by the County Councils, whether say 20 feet, 40 feet or 60 feet. It was estimated that the requisite number of 20 feet culverts would cost about £3000, 140 feet £5000, and 60 feet £6000 to £7000. There were two styles of culverts suggested, one having a circular top and the other a flat top of reinforced concrete in slabs that could be lifted for cleaning purposes. : A scheme of 20.feet culverts could, be carried out at a cost within the, scope of the ordinary maintenance revenue of the Water Board.

Mr F. Horrell said that motor-cars having come to stay, it was the duty of the local bodies to meet the requirements of car traffic. The time was not far distant when motor-cars must pay a tax. In regard to the proposed culverts, he thought the scheme was a! , good one. A culvert 40 feet should be the average width, but it would be necessary to be careful not to put in culverts that would become obstructed with debris in flood time, and throw the water on to the adjoining lands. The Water Board had always met the requirements of the local bodies in respect to the fbrds in a most reasonable manner and the local bodies should not put any obstacle in the way of the proposed improvements. ; Mr H. J. Horrell spoke in favour of the adoption of culverts, but did _ not think it would be necessary to bridge all the small races/ thought 40ft. culverts would be required, and that it would be necessary to, have protection at the ends. ; Mr R. O. Dixon stated that the Eyre County Council had; decided to support the Water Board's scheme. He was of opinion that culverts 30ft. m width would do, and that crossings should be made at the ends to allow of horses being watered. .- „ Mr Cooper considered that h the Water Board could improve the waterrace crossings for public traffic no-ob-stacle should be placed in the way. • The chairman said that all the Water Board asked was the guidance of the County Councils in respect to the width of the culverts, but trusted that the width of the culverts would not be made too great for the finances or the °Mr 'Meyers said the Oxford County Council had not met since the AY ater Board's proposal was made known. He had been questioned by ratepayers about the matter, and he found a very general opinion existed that it the Water Board was prepared to put in culverts it should be supported. There were 133 fords in connection with the Eyre water-race system, but many or these "were op out-of-the-way roads where there was little traffic, and culverts were not necessary. The chairman said that the Board, proposed to put in culverts only where the traffic warranted. After some further discussion it was resolved, on the; motion of Mr H. J. Horrell, seconded by Mr Meyers:— "That this meeting is of opinion that the Water Board should proceed with the construction of concrete culverts over the water-races, but that plans should first be submitted to the county councils interested.'.' Mr J. McCormack suggested that concrete pipes should be used in the majority of cases, and culverts constructed over the main races. In all cases the roadway should be left level.

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Bibliographic details

WATER-RACE FORDS., Ashburton Guardian, Volume XXXIII, Issue 8803, 25 February 1914

Word Count

WATER-RACE FORDS. Ashburton Guardian, Volume XXXIII, Issue 8803, 25 February 1914

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