Fri 2 Mar 18.
Excitement for Taumarunui Railway Station concept plans
Council is really pleased with the level of excitement shown at the meeting this week (Tue 27 Feb) to discuss the concept plans for the refurbishment of the Taumarunui Railway Station.
Around 60 people squeezed into the REAP building on Hakiaha St to hear from Mayor Don Cameron, local Ward councilors, Council staff and the project consultant Alastair Wells.
Mayor Cameron started the meeting by providing a recap on the importance of having vibrant, attractive townships to achieving the wider economic and social development objectives everyone wanted.
“When Council started the township revitalisation discussion with Taumarunui residents they made it clear that they were tired of waiting for things to happen and wanted to see tangible signs of progress along with the opportunities and investment that comes with it,” said Mayor Cameron.
“Council responded by bringing forward projects such as the Northern Entrance and River Walkway and committed resources to developing concept plans as a starting point for community discussion.
Feedback found that the community wanted something iconic and memorable that would entice travelers to stop, and that locals could be proud of, that both celebrated Taumarunui’s history and its aspirations for the future.
With Council taking a favourable long term lease on the Railway Station building it has presented new opportunities for how the revitalisation along Hakiaha St could proceed and we could achieve these objectives,” he said.
Project Consultant Alastair Wells presented the concept of utilising the Railway Station as a tourism and community hub where the i-SITE and proposed community museum would share the ground floor and leverage off each other for mutual benefit.
It is envisaged that ‘the hub’ would provide a compelling reason for people to stop by providing a range of visitor services with the community museum adding another destination attraction that would showcase Taumarunui’s journey through history.
Group Manager Community Services Margaret Hawthorne said that with the favourable response to the concept ideas presented at this week’s meeting Council has instructed the project landscape architects to develop an integrated set of plans that brings together the central township plans and the Railway Station building plans.
“We expect the integrated set of plans to be ready in around six weeks in early April at which time we will put these out for public feedback.
People in support of township revitalisation should also ensure that they have their say in support of proposed budgets for these projects in Council’s draft ten year Long Term Plan 2018-28.
The consultation on the LTP opens in mid-March through until mid-April,” she said.