Canopy call complicated
Covering Porirua’s City centre just got a bit more complex, with half-replacement and transparent panels options now on the table.
Though a decision is still to be made as part of Porirua City Council’s upcoming long- term plan process, councillors were briefed last week on the multitude of options from canopy manufacturers Structurflex.
They include full replacement ($2.49 million) and full replacement with transparent panels (allowing 62 per cent light in, $3.192m).
Options with and without covering Serlby Place (from about Subway towards Countdown) were also presented. They ranged from $2.1m to $2.5m. Not replacing the canopy at all and disposing or securing the steel supports would cost $490,000.
The council report notes that if Serlby Place is not to be covered, a shared vehicle and pedestrian space could be developed.
Porirua mayor Nick Leggett said that though the stunning summer weather had led to positive feedback from retailers and residents regarding the city centre being uncovered, the council’s decision would be made in July.
‘‘By that time we could have had months of bad weather, so that could lead to different views,’’ he said.
‘‘ I am getting concerns from residents about the costs, but what we need to remember is we are not protecting what is there, but finding a solution for where we want to head [revitalising the CBD].
‘‘Right now I’m going through a listening exercise and we should continue to do that.’’
The new canopy would have a lifespan of about 25 years. Any coverings would take up to eight weeks to install and that would probably happen next February.
Many people have enjoyed the extra light and sun since the canopies were removed.