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Council Plans For New Papamoa East Town Centre

November 30, 2004

Council Plans For New Papamoa East Town Centre Moving Swiftly

Plans for a new town near Tauranga at Papamoa East are moving ahead with the council expected to notify a plan change mid-2005.

Landowners Bluehaven Holdings and Hawridge Developments are working closely with Tauranga City Council to provide all the information necessary to make the plan changes to accommodate the new Papamoa East centre.

Bluehaven spokesperson Darrell Carlin says the council will receive all finalised plans and concepts before Christmas.

"Council expects to notify the public and call for submissions in the middle of next year and all going well the plan changes will be finalised by the end of 2005."

Work will not begin on the development site until winter months, due to dust and sand control bylaws.

Interest in the new town has been high since the 10-day charrette in September. Carlin says Bluehaven have already begun forming a database of those interested in purchasing residential land or opening businesses within the town centre.

"The Papamoa East centre is going to be quite unlike anything seen before in the Bay of Plenty. Many of the 25,000 residents will live in mid-rise apartments directly above the Modena Beach shopping area. Retailers are already recognising the potential for having a captive audience living on their doorstep.

"Modena Beach will see a move to more urban-style living, although plenty of sections of varying densities will also be available for more traditional housing styles."

Carlin says there has also been a high level of interest from builders, architects and contractors coming forward with ideas for how they want to be involved in the development.

Many local tradespeople, residents, iwi, council staff and government department representatives took part in the September charrette.

The charrette, an urban planning concept often used overseas but as yet rarely used in New Zealand, gave American and Australian urban planners a chance to meet with local specialists and residents.

Principal designer Miami-based Demetri Baches of urban designers DPZ says one of the main issues raised from the charrette was the need to mitigate all stormwater on site.

"Local iwi and downstream landowners were adamant no stormwater should flow into the nearby Kaituna River or ocean. From that, our designers were able to speak with stormwater and hydrology experts and now all stormwater will be retained on site using special draining techniques, large green open spaces combined with water retention ponds, swales and grassy plantings."

Baches says a charrette is best described as an intensive design forum, which pulls 10 months design work into 10 days.

"The charrette is vital because it's as important to know the hardware – the nuts and bolts of design – as it is to know the software. The software being, how you get the thing you've designed to be best used by the people that it is aimed for."

ENDS


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