Hospital rebuild priority for Labour and National
Jacinda Ardern says her Labour-led Government has put ‘‘our money where our mouth is’’ when it comes to rebuilding health infrastructure, as members of both major political parties call the redevelopment of Nelson Hospital a priority.
‘‘I’m yet to see over the announcement that National have made around Nelson Hospital where that sits in their budget, I haven’t seen it budgeted for,’’ the Labour leader told Stuff.
During a visit to Nelson last Monday, National leader Judith Collins promised to prioritise the replacement of Nelson Hospital, if National is elected, starting with community consultation in 2021.
‘‘Nelson needs new hospital buildings and National will deliver them,’’ Collins said.
Three days later, when Ardern visited the city, she said the Labour-led government had spent ‘‘roughly $3.5 billion’’ on capital investment in health during its three-year term while National had spent less than $2b during its nine years in government. ‘‘So I’d say it’s a question of who people would trust to continue to make the investments,’’ she said.
The detailed business case was being developed for a Nelson Hospital rebuild ‘‘so there’s obviously a process in train’’.
(Nelson Mail, Monday 5 October 2020)
Feedback sought on plan to guide growth
The Nelson public are being asked for feedback on a far-reaching plan that will tackle issues such as housing growth, natural hazards, climate change, and the future of the city’s CBD.
The Nelson City Council released its draft Whakamahere Whakatu Nelson Plan for public feedback this week. Mayor Rachel Reese said it was an opportunity ‘‘to shape what will become the guiding resource management planning document for the Nelson region’’.
The Nelson Plan will set out what residents will be permitted to do on their properties, and how the city uses its natural resources.
At the draft stage, the plan has identified five key topics as the focus of public feedback: climate change, growth and intensification, the city centre, natural hazards, and freshwater.
Some proposed changes include the establishment of a new medium-density residential zone which would accommodate buildings up to 11 metres/3 storeys high, increasing building heights in the city centre, and removing on-site parking requirements consistent with the National Policy Statement on Urban Development.
The first round of public engagement for the Draft Nelson Plan will run from October 6 to December 6.
A consultation document will arrive in letterboxes across Nelson from October 7 and will also be available online at shape.nelson.govt.nz.
The second phase of engagement is planned for early next year to cover parts of the plan not released in phase one.
A third phase occurs in 2022 when the plan will be publicly notified and the formal submission and hearing process begins.
Reese said the next two phases of informal engagement were a great opportunity for people to give their feedback.
(Nelson Mail, Wednesday 7 October 2020)
Council faces $700k bill for non-compliant hardstand
The Nelson City Council has been forced to spend an extra $700,000 on the Nelson Marina hardstand after it was found to be non-compliant.
The council was issued with an abatement notice for the hardstand in March this year, due to consent requirements not being met.
In order to be compliant, the hardstand area needs to be sealed with asphalt and a new sand filtration system installed, replacing the current mussel shell system.
Work is expected to begin on the hardstand in the last week of November, and take about four weeks to complete.
(Nelson Weekly, Wednesday 7 October 2020)
Land purchased for new Richmond primary school
The Government has bought a three-hectare site for a new primary school at fast-growing Richmond West.
‘‘We are one step closer to a new school in the area,’’ Education Minister Chris Hipkins told The Nelson Mail. ‘‘This is an important milestone for families looking to move into the area and those who already live there.’’
However, it would ‘‘take time’’ before construction started on the site, which was in The Meadows development, he said. The delay was ‘‘to ensure that we have had time to consult with the community and get the design right’’.
‘‘We will, however, continue to closely monitor the school-age population in the area, so we stay ahead of the curve.’’
The school-age population in the Nelson region is growing, particularly at Richmond West on the Waimea Plains. More than 400 homes are due to be built in The Meadows, among more than 1200 new properties planned for the Richmond West Development Area as a whole.
Confirmation of the site purchase comes as community engagement is under way on the future of schooling in the area. That process, due to end on October 16, involves a range of options, including the construction of a new school on a new site; changing some outlying schools, such as Brightwater, Hope and Wakefield, from year 1-6 to year 1-8;, and relocating Ranzau School to new facilities at Richmond West.
(Nelson Mail, Saturday 14 October 2020)