As part of our Waikanae town centre improvements, we've got $1 million available to make improvements to Mahara Place.
We last consulted with the community on Mahara Place improvements in 2014 and 2016. From this consultation we developed some concepts for the improvements based on community feedback.
Since then, things have changed. The plans and timelines for the upgrades of the Mahara Gallery and Waikanae Library have been adjusted; the community has grown; and the amount of money available for Council-funded improvements has been adjusted (*see more below) through the Long Term Plan process.
So what's happening now?
In light of these changes, we’re revisiting our plans for Mahara Place to make sure our approach is fit-for-purpose, can be delivered within the available funding, and will meet the community’s needs. To do this, we’ve set up the Mahara Place Development Committee (MPDC) to help further develop designs for the improvements.
The Committee is made up of representatives from Waikanae businesses and the community, and have met in July and August to review high-level concepts for the Mahara Place improvements. We’ve asked Committee members for further feedback on these concepts, which will help us work up detailed designs. At this stage, we hope to start construction in early 2019.
Who's part of the development committee?
The members of the Committee were nominated by the community board and include:
Council representatives include our urban designer, our head gardener, and our town centres project team.
How much money is available for the Mahara Place improvements?
For the upcoming stage of work, there's $1million available for improvements.
As part of the 2018 Long term plan process, Council’s focus was on making sure we balance spending, and live within our financial constraints. We heard community concerns about affordability and we put a strong focus on a financially sustainable approach and spending less in order to pay back more debt. The focus of the financial strategy is a reduced capital investment programme focused on infrastructure that supports resilience and agreed growth. By managing operating and capital expenditure at sustainable levels, borrowings and rates increases can be balanced while making sure the cost of major assets is spread over the time.
What this means for the Mahara Place is that originally, as part of the 2015 Long term plan, we had approximately $1.5 million allocated for the Mahara Place improvements. As part of the 2018 Long term plan process, we deferred $500,000 of this money to years 9 and 10 (FY’s 26/27 and 27/28) to align with other Waikanae town centre projects happening down the track.
How to keep in the loop
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What other Waikanae town centre projects are happening?
Other projects planned for the town centre include: