The Eastern side of Hastings is the focus of a new collaborative strategic planning study that will help guide future sustainable land use and development in the area to benefit the entire community.
Called the Karamū Master Plan, it’s been initiated by Hastings District Council to identify the best, holistic way to unlock the productivity growth potential in the area, at the same time ensuring cultural , economic, environmental and social considerations are foremost.
The council and mana whenua are partnering to co-design the Master Plan, and being situated in the heart of the area the Ruahāpia and Waipatu marae communities have had an important role to play from the outset.
The council is also seeking feedback from the wider public on any opportunities or issues they feel are important, which will be facilitated by an online portal as well as face to face community and stakeholder workshops and meetings.
Consultants GHD and Boffa Miskell have been engaged to assist with the project, and $600,000 of Provincial Growth Fund funding has been approved to go towards research, a business case and resulting master plan.
The plan encompasses the traditional Karamū area, including Tomoana, Waipatu, Ruahāpia, and Showgrounds Hawke’s Bay Tomoana, and considers future industrial expansion, community plans, roading and infrastructure, product distribution hubs, and potential wetland enhancements in the area.
Importantly, Te Ara Kahikatea and the Whakatū community will also come under the strategic planning study, given the proximity to industrial expansion, distribution and infrastructure; and including community aspirations.
Underpinning this activity, and of equal importance, will be recognising and embracing the district’s cultural and community aspirations, ensuring the physical environment is safeguarded as a taonga and managed sustainably, creating jobs and improving pathways into employment, and positioning Hastings as a beacon for investment, new business, and skilled migrants.
An important consideration is guiding the land use and development of this area to create better outcomes for our communities.
Demand in many sectors is outgrowing supply, from housing for our people to protection of existing natural resources, and this must be balanced against what impact this may have on the highly valuable soils that drive our economy.
Hastings Mayor Sandra Hazlehurst says this plan will provide a framework to make comprehensive and considered decisions about future infrastructure development to benefit generations to come.
“This is about getting on the front foot to face the challenges and opportunities ahead of us and create a strong plan that protects and enhances our natural resources while unlocking the full potential our land offers.
“And it’s fundamentally about our people, creating a sustainable future for our communities that incorporates and nurtures our cultural and social cohesiveness and wellbeing.
“This is an exciting project that will bring benefits for the whole district.”
The final business case and Master Plan is scheduled to be complete by the end of November this year. People can have their input by going to www.my voicemychoice.co.nz
17 February 2020
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