Changes made to Town master plan

Ruapehu Press - - Out & About - FRANCES FER­GU­SON

Con­cept plans for Tau­marunui’s town cen­tre were given a fi­nal tweak be­fore go­ing out to an­other round of pub­lic con­sul­ta­tion.

The Tau­marunui-ohura Ward Com­mit­tee held a spe­cial work­shop to con­sider the re­vised plans.

The plans were orig­i­nally pro­duced by Be­spoke Land­scape Ar­chi­tects but, fol­low­ing con­sul­ta­tion, now in­cor­po­rates com­mu­nity feed­back and ideas.

Chair­per­son Karen Ngatai said the Com­mit­tee dis­cussed more de­tailed de­signs be­fore go­ing out for the next round of com­mu­nity con­sul­ta­tion.

‘‘Over­all we were happy with the ex­ist­ing pro­pos­als for plant­ing, a wa­ter fea­ture and the look­out tower which we would like to be more multi use rather than just pro­vid­ing ac­cess for a kids slide.

‘‘There were other el­e­ments that we would like amended such as us­ing rail­way iron for fenc­ing rather than the pro­posed warped tim­ber and de­sign changes to en­cour­age pedes­trian flow.’’

One key rec­om­men­da­tion was to de­mol­ish the ex­ist­ing toi­let block and re­place it with a new toi­let on the old li­brary site.

‘‘This will put the new toi­lets closer to the pedes­trian cross­ing and al­low the old toi­lets to re­main in use while con­struc­tion of their re­place­ment un­der­way, ‘‘ she said.

The pro­posed new de­sign would see the loss of a num­ber of ex­ist­ing carparks and the com­mit­tee were keen to en­sur­ing ad­e­quate park­ing for cars and buses.

‘‘To re­solve this we are look­ing at open­ing up ac­cess to the park­ing be­hind Haki­aha St and other things is such as work­ing with En­ter­pris­ing Tau­marunui Inc to en­cour­age lo­cal busi­ness staff not to take up the Haki­aha St parks dur­ing the work­day.’’

One of the projects sug­gested from con­sul­ta­tion on the ver­sion one con­cept plans was that shop ve­ran­das should be re­fur­bished and con­sid­ered as part of the re­vi­tal­i­sa­tion project.

With time­frame re­quire­ments for the Earth­quake Prone Build­ing Act ex­pected later this year the Com­mit­tee de­cided that any de­ci­sions con­cern­ing the shop ve­ran­das need to be de­ferred un­til then.

‘‘De­pend­ing on what any par­tic­u­lar build­ing owner needs to do, and in what time­frame, will in­flu­ence the de­ci­sions they make about their build­ing’s fu­ture.’’

In the in­terim coun­cil will be start­ing a con­ver­sa­tion with build­ing own­ers about whether they might do this work them­selves or whether it would be bet­ter for coun­cil to take on the project and re­cover the cost via rates over time.

‘‘There are a num­ber of sig­nif­i­cant things that coun­cil and the com­mu­nity still need to con­sider.’’ Karen Ngatai

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