Council votes not to proceed with Te Uruhi (Kāpiti Gateway) facility
2 Mar 2023, 3:42 PM
Kāpiti Coast District Council agreed at an additional meeting today, not to proceed with the Te Uruhi project due to significant cost escalation. Council also resolved to explore alternative ways to achieve the project objectives.
In 2020, the estimated construction cost of the Te Uruhi facility was $4.4million. By May 2022, following more detailed design and price increases in the construction market, the estimated cost had risen to $7.8million. The 2023 estimate with construction costs still rising, now stands at $8.4million. Combined with related increases in projected operating costs, Council agrees the project is unaffordable at this time.
Kāpiti Coast District Mayor Janet Holborow acknowledges the project has been the subject of a high level of public interest.
“In context of the current cost-of-living crisis and what’s happening across the country in terms of climate change, we need to consider what’s most important to us at this time,” said Mayor Holborow.
“Council remains committed to achieving the project objectives, including working with our iwi partners to acknowledge the significance of the site, celebrate our rich cultural history, improve biosecurity practices for Kāpiti Island and promote our district as a tourist destination.
“We recognise the deep connections our iwi partners have with the Te Uruhi location and the inherited responsibility they feel to care for the area. Council will continue working with mana whenua to help achieve their aspirations of restoring the visibility of their connections to the area.
“We have also heard from our community about the need for them to be more involved in the development of any future project,” said Mayor Holborow.
Mayor Holborow identified other opportunities for achieving project objectives, including cultural expression at Maclean Park, working with iwi closely during planning for the new community centre and Waikanae Library, and working with the Department of Conservation and the Kāpiti Island tour operator to improve biosecurity practices.
To date, $1.55million has been spent on the Te Uruhi project. Of this, $557,000 came from the Government’s COVID response and recovery fund and $1million from Council’s budget. The funding was spent on upgrading the Tikotu Stream, design and professional fees, and consenting and project management costs.
More information at kapiticoast.govt.nz/teuruhi