TOWC to consider public feedback and future direction for Taumarunui revitalization plans
The public feedback on the Taumarunui initial revitalisation concept plans will be considered by the Taumarunui-Ohura Ward Committee (TOWC) at their up-coming meeting on 23 February.
The purpose of the initial concept plans was to start a conversation around township redevelopment and challenge peoples thinking on what could be possibly be achieved.
Council Project Leader for Taumarunui revitalisation Margaret Hawthorne said that level of public interest with the initial concept plans was outstanding and stimulated a wide ranging public discussion and a lot of feedback.
“Taking the feedback into account the TOWC will make decisions on the future direction of the plans,” she said.
“If it is concluded that there is an appetite for change they will make some decisions about what to keep and what to change and provide this feedback to the landscape architects Bespoke to inform the development of a new amended set of plans for the next round of community consultation.”
“Council also needs to consider the best way to fund everything we want to do which could involve a shift to District wide funding for projects that are currently funded via targeted rates which includes township revitalisation.”
“The significant consultation around these issues will form part of the 2018-28 Long Term Plan (LTP) next year where-by we will have a lot better idea of the overall costs.”
Mrs. Hawthorne said if the decision is to proceed the next public consultation phase will seek to ‘nail down’ what will get built and in what order.
“One of the important things we would like people to take on is that township revitalisation is a journey and it is important that they stay engaged with the process as we progress through the up-coming stages.”
“Council received wide-ranging feedback and comments on the initial concept plans in a wide variety of ways including; Council’s website, feedback forms, verbal conversations, sticky notes, Facebook comments and emails.”
“The feedback covered the range from ‘love it’ to ‘hate it’ but on the whole was felt to be overwhelmingly in favour of wanting to see things happening and the town moving forward.”
“Recognition that people are keen to see action on the ground and things happening as soon as possible was the reason Council brought forward development of the northern entrance and river walk and cycle way projects.”
“The central township part of Taumarunui’s revitalisation is however a much bigger project with a lot more complexity and associated cost.”
Mrs. Hawthorne added that the summary report on public feedback to the Taumarunui concept plans will be available on Council’s website before the TOWC meeting.”
“Members of the public are welcome to attend the meeting.”