INDEPENDENT NEWS

Ruapehu: New options for old library site

Published: Fri 20 Oct 2017 06:45 PM
New options for old library site
The demolition of the old public library on Hakiaha St is scheduled to start on Tuesday 7 November and is expected to take around seven days to complete.
During the demolition people are asked to avoid the work site area and take extra care when driving past the site along Hakiaha St (SH4).
Council Group Manager Community Services Margaret Hawthorne said that the demolition will involve heavy machinery on-site and trucks loading and removing demolition material.
“Council apologies for any inconvenience the work may cause,” she said.
“This is quite an exciting stage as it is the start of getting things ready for whatever revitalisation development plans are to come.”
“Following demolition the site will be covered with ready lawn to enable the public to make use of the area while decisions about how the area is to be developed are confirmed following the ten year Long Term Plan consultation and Council next year (2018).”
Mrs. Hawthorne said that the initial thinking has been to develop an iconic new public toilet on the old library site.
“Over the last two months Council has been asking for people to submit concept design ideas that could help inform how any new toilet block could look as part of a ‘Taumarunui Public Toilet Concept Design Challenge’.”
“The Concept Design Challenge which finishes today only received four entries which was a bit surprising given the high degree of community engagement in the Taumarunui revitalisation discussion so far.”
“Since the start of the Concept Design Challenge Council has secured a favourable long term lease on the Railway Station building which provides an alternative option that could save ratepayers significant money.”
“This would see the new public toilet facilities incorporated within a redevelopment of the Railway Station building including a new i-SITE configuration, the proposed new local museum upstairs.”
Mrs. Hawthorne stressed that at this stage no decision had been made either way.
“Because of the potential amount of money that could be saved from not needing to build something from scratch along with other benefits such as being able to utilize the old library site for other uses the Taumarunui-Ohura Ward Committee will discuss how to proceed at their meeting next week (26 Oct).”
“Any decisions will be publicly consulted on in April next year as part of the ten year Long Term Plan 2018-28,” she said.
*End*

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