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The New Zealand Railways Magazine, Volume 5, Issue 9 (April 1, 1931)

System of Inland Waterways Proposed

System of Inland Waterways Proposed.

The Canterbury Association (by utilising the various streams in the vicinity of Christchurch, and connecting these streams by canals) had planned a system of inland waterways which would provide communication for boats between the town of Sumner and the area between the Selwyn and the Wai-makariri rivers. The Sumner road was to connect Sumner with the port at Lyttelton. The canals projected were: From the Estuary to the Avon (eliminating the use of the lower reaches of the river); from the Avon to the Purarekanui (Styx); and from the Heathcote to the Halswell. Land was reserved for these canals, but the financial position of the Association did not permit any construction work to be undertaken. When the property of the Association was transferred to the Provincial Government these reserves were retained (they still appear on the district maps) though no further progress was projected.

During the session which commenced on 1st October, 1858, the provincial Council recommended that a Commission, consisting of Messrs. Bray, Cass, Harman, Whitcombe and Wylde, together with the Provincial Engineer (Mr. Dobson) and page 37 the Provincial Secretary (Mr. Ollivier) be appointed to advise the Superintendent in regard to lines of inland communication, and to take the necessary steps to reserve the land required for such lines.