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Lessons learned from review of CBD upgrade

Lessons learned from review of CBD upgrade

Auckland City chief executive, David Rankin, has released a review of the Vulcan Lane consultation and decision-making processes.

He says public concern about what council officers had proposed for the Vulcan Lane upgrade was a tough but valuable lesson.

"We were all reminded of the importance of listening carefully to what people say during consultation and not missing important messages. Second, the review reinforced that if we can't reach agreement with affected parties we must explain why. Third, we need to be clear when we are communicating rather than consulting, and not confuse the two.

"This was an opportunity to improve and we have grabbed that with both hands. I believe we should all take this as a salutatory lesson in how passionate Aucklanders are about their city. In the long run that can only be a good thing.

"This report is not a finger-pointing exercise. That would be futile. It's a clear explanation about what didn't go as well as it should and what needs to be done to address the wider challenge - upgrading Auckland's Central Business District.

"The report's authors gave the Mayor and involved councillors a list of draft findings a month ago so that we could address some critical issues before proceeding any further with the streetscape project. We now have their endorsement and can get underway, beginning with Queen Street on 4 January."

Mr Rankin said Auckland City would be investing in further consultation training as well as bringing in specialist advice when appropriate.

"The review also includes some key recommendations regarding project structure and process management, along with potential improvements in risk identification and management.

"We have already made some changes to how we run complex projects like these. Together with the information from the review, I am confident we have a recipe that is already yielding results that will benefit the CBD, its residents, businesses and in fact all of Auckland."

Ends

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