The cost of doing business
With irrigators springing up all over Hawea Flat we need a big, new substation to supply enough power.
Aurora chose the obvious site; a piece of waste land lying under the existing power line. Surprise, surprise, a lot of objections were raised when they put in their application.
The site they chose was next to two fast growing recreational assets: the Hawea River cycle track and White Water Park. It’s also the gateway to Hawea Flat, a community where hundreds of people live.
Aurora’s response to community concerns was the offer to reduce the reflectivity index of the paintwork and the baffling statement that, while people may be able to see parts of the development, ‘‘this is not an adverse effect in and of itself’’.
We live in a beautiful place. Visual amenity drives our economy and makes the people who live and work here happy. How our place looks, really matters to us.
It’s hard to be sympathetic when the cost of failed applications is selfinflicted. There are plenty of substation sites to choose from. A ten minute brainstorm by Aurora could have sent up red flags about this site.
That sort of consultation could save everyone the pain of expensive and time consuming battles.
● Sue Coutts lives in Hawea Flat.