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By David Hill

The events of September 4, 2010, were remembered at Tuesday’s Waimakariri District Council meeting.

Mayor David Ayers took the opportunity to acknowledge the 8th anniversary of the 7.1 magnitude earthquake, which struck at around 4.30am eight years ago near Darfield and devastated the communities of Kaiapoi, Pines Beach and Kairaki in particular.

“I would like to acknowledge the huge contributions our community has made and the various processes we have gone through to regenerate our district and I note that we have made very good progress.”

Mr Ayers says the recent opening of the new Feldwick Drive in Kaiapoi was a milestone as “one of the last recovery projects” from the earthquake, as distinct from regeneration projects.

Once councillors got down to business, they adopted a new public spaces policy and a new alcohol policy.

The public spaces policy lays out the council’s policy for the business 1 and 2 zones in the Rangiora and Kaiapoi town centres and includes clauses on smoke free areas, “self-propelled mobility transport” such as skateboards, scooters and mobility scooters.

Senior policy analyst Mike O’Connell says development the policy was “a balancing act” around accessibility, maintaining the vibrancy of business centres and re-enforcing council bylaws.

Regulation manager Nick Harrison says the main change to the new Alcohol Control Bylaw (2018) is the inclusion of Murphy Park in Kaiapoi as an “alcohol control area”, after the Northern Bulldogs Rugby League Club raised concerns about drinking on the sidelines during matches.

While the existing alcohol control areas are being maintained in Rangiora, Kaiapoi, Oxford and Woodend, this is not being imposed in Pegasus at this stage, Mr Harrison says.

“There have been some concerns raised in Pegasus, but there is a high threshold under the legislation and this hasn’t been met.”

Mr Harrison says the council can choose to review the bylaw at anytime if there is sufficient evidence to make a change.

After much deliberation councillors also voted against reducing the speed limit to 30kph on the gravel section Cones Road, north of Carrs Road and near Ashley Forest.