Property News – 8 November 2023

How do you solve a problem like the CBD?

“Nelson city is dying,” Matthew Benge proclaimed. “This city of ours needs an energy boost, and an energy boost like never before,” Mel Courtney said. The city was in a “sad state”, Trudi Brand added.

The Nelson City councillors were discussing where to put an inner-city playground this month, but the underlying theme was clear – the CBD needs revitalisation, a message that’s echoed from all corners of the city.

The question mark comes when you look at what that actually means – and how we achieve it. Now, with work beginning to create a vision for a major overhaul of Bridge St, just what can be done to change Nelson’s CBD will be put to the test.

For mayor Nick Smith, there’s a clear and stark problem that needs addressing. “Nelson city has great soul, but it is in need of revitalisation.”

(Nelson Mail, 30 October 2023)

‘Huge sense of pride and also relief’ as Tenths hearing concludes

There have been times that Motueka woman Jackie Stephens has been riled in the past three months.

Stephens (Ngāti Rārua, Te Ātiawa), was at the Nelson Tenths hearing at the High Court in Wellington to support whānau, and said the almost 180-year-old case was a fight that should not have got this far.

Listening to the Crown and its “scattered arguments” made her blood boil, she said, “how they’re denying that we were ever customary owners of those lands, despite the Supreme Court’s ruling.”

The outcome would affect not just the current generations, but future generations too. Turning up to the hearing was about “standing steadfast for our tūpuna who won’t see the day we get our lands returned”, she said.

The Nelson Tenths, the country’s longest standing property claim against the Crown, concluded last week following a 10-week hearing.

(Nelson Mail, 4 November 2023)

Landlords take aim at rates, regulations, parking loss

Commercial landlord Gaire Thompson acknowledges he has opposed “heaps” of Nelson City Council plans for what he says is inappropriate spending.

At a council meeting in May, Thompson, who owns around a dozen properties in central Nelson, is recorded in the council minutes as opposing “the allocation of funds to the library or the arts centre … He opposed the development of infrastructure to enable central city living … He opposed the spending of funds on the use of te reo Māori and proposed that Our Nelson [publication is] scrapped.

(Nelson Mail, 4 November 2023)

The projects for the Nelson CBD that didn’t get off the ground

They were big, bold, and aimed to bring life and vibrancy to Nelson’s CBD. However, opposition, cost or red tape meant these developments never saw the light of day. Amy Ridout looks at the recent projects that didn’t make it.

2011: Montgomery Square upgrade

2011: Performing Arts Centre

2016: Church Lane development

2018: Container development on Bridge St

2019: Wakatu Square’s boutique shopping development

2020: Trafalgar St upgrade

2019: Koata Park gondola

2022: Nelson Library

February 2023: Science precinct

(Nelson Mail, 4 November 2023)

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