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The Waimakariri District Council is one of the largest employers in the Waimakariri District and has become an employer of choice.
Riverside shopping and dining, canal boats and new public spaces for events could all be a part of Kaiapoi’s future. They are just some of the ideas featured in the Kaiapoi Town Centre plan which was adopted by the Waimakariri District Council today.
Councillors expressed enthusiasm for the plan which, for the first time, includes plans for the formerly red-zoned Mixed-Use Business Areas. Once fully developed, these areas could see the existing town centre grow by approximately 60 percent.
Waimakariri District Mayor, David Ayers, says this land provides a rare opportunity to shape the town centre.
“It gives us the chance to plan for a town centre that is focused around the river, embraces the wishes of the community and will meet the needs of future generations.”
The Plan promotes Kaiapoi as becoming ‘New Zealand’s Best Rivertown’ and describes the town’s potential to become a popular and vibrant destination. It aims to build on recent improvements to the town centre, such as the Ruataniwha Kaiapoi Civic Centre, the redesign of Williams Street and the almost completed Marine Precinct.
Councillor Al Blackie says there is a strong sense of optimism about the town’s future as shown by private developments such as the new waterfront brewery and introduction of the River Queen, a cruising restaurant vessel, to the Kaiapoi River.
He says with the construction of the nearby Regeneration Reserves also underway, it’s an exciting time for Kaiapoi.
“In just a few years we’ll have these new recreational facilities right on the doorstep of the town centre, so everything is looking positive, but we need to keep working hard to make sure we realise our town’s full potential.”
The Plan contains 26 projects, and while some will be completed in the next few years, others will rely on population growth over coming decades. A top priority will be planning for the release of Mixed Use Business Area land and ensuring it’s developed in a way that supports the existing town.
Other projects include establishing a public transport hub, town lighting upgrades, landscaping and providing more spaces for community markets and public art.
Rangiora will be next under the spotlight, with a review of the Rangiora Town Centre Plan expected next year.
More information on the Kaiapoi Town Centre Plan can be found at waimakariri.govt.nz/ktc