Solar panels could be added to centre
A plan to add features to the Matamata-Piako Civic and Memorial Centre will meet sustainability goals but also put $120,000 onto the project’s price tag.
Matamata-Piako District Council meets this week to consider approving costs for double glazing for the Tainui St centre’s windows and a re-design to include solar panels.
A report to the council by Kaimai Consultants manager Roger Lamberth said the cost of double glazing was about $58,763 while the re-design for solar panels was about $8000.
The cost to install the solar panels was another $60,000, but the council would only consider whether to approve the re-design costs at this week’s meeting.
The options were discussed by the council on June 1 when it decided it would like to add double glazing and solar panels.
The additions would help reduce the building’s energy use over time and meet the council’s energy policy, which encourages it to think about ways to improve energy efficiency in its public buildings.
The council met with Transition Matamata and Power Solutions to talk about the additions.
Transition Matamata was a non-profit community group promoting energy conservation and sustainable living. It had submitted on the sustainability features and design of the centre, and a further appraisal was made on double glazing and solar panels.
Power Solutions, the council’s energy management consultants, was asked to report on the energy savings initiatives around the building’s management system, lighting and lighting control system and solar panels.
It supported installing solar panels and said a new build was the ‘‘opportune time’’.
‘‘The initial estimate return on investment in 10 years and the life of the [solar] panels will be 25 years,’’ Power Solutions said in its report to the council.
The council considered reports from Power Solutions and Transition Matamata and believed double glazing and solar panels would have long term benefits, environmentally and financially.
The total project budget for the new centre was $6,923,787, including contingencies.
Lamberth’s report said the costs for the new features could come out of the project contingency fund, but it would be up to council to determine how to fund the extras.
The project made headlines for other reasons earlier this year. Outside the building is the Petersen water fountain and its fate was still unknown.
Matamata-Piako mayor Jan Barnes said council staff had asked the family several questions about the fountain. Barnes understood the Petersen family had planned to make a submission to the council but she had not been advised of a date.
The fountain remains fenced off while work on the new centre continues.