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California Drive in Totara Park, built extra wide to keep houses away from the Wellington Fault that runs under it.
Totara Park is a suburb of Upper Hutt, New Zealand, located 2 km northeast of the city centre. It is accessed via the Totara Park Bridge which crosses the Hutt River, connecting it to State Highway 2 and the main Upper Hutt urban area. It was popular in the 1970s and 1980s for families moving into the Upper Hutt area.
Totara Park is built on alluvial gravel. The Wellington Fault runs through the suburb - one section of California Drive straddles the fault, and the road lanes are built on either side of the fault with a large central reservation between them. This was designed so houses would be offset at least 20 metres from the fault, hopefully limiting damage if the fault were to rupture.
Points of interest
Was the western side to an ornate suspension bridge opened in 1917. Maoribank Bridge, originally being able to carry automobiles and trucks, eventually was used for pedestrians only, and finally collapsing in a medium flood in the early 1990s. A new modern type suspension bridge was then built on the northern side towards Brown Owl.
The river surrounding the original suspension bridge was a popular picnic and swimming spot for the entire region.
Cannon Point Walkway
Cannon Point (elevation 345 m ) is a high point along the western side of the valley and forming part of Akatarawa Regional Park. It was named for an old fallen tree resembling a cannon that was once there. Walking routes, cycle tracks and logging roads connect Cannon Point to Akatarawa, Moonshine and other areas to the west.
California Park features the Wellington Fault Scarplet, a rare example of a fault scarp that is readily accessible to the public.
Totara Park School is the sole school located in Totara Park. Serving Years 1 to 6, it has a socioeconomic decile of 7 and a roll of 298 students as of November 2017.
- McSaveney, Eileen (16 November 2012). "Active faults - Building on or near active faults". Te Ara - the Encyclopedia of New Zealand. Retrieved 11 May 2013.
- "Directory of Schools - as at 20 February 2018". New Zealand Ministry of Education. Retrieved 5 March 2018.