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North Kumutoto consultation starts today

21 January 2014

Wellington City Council is seeking the public’s views from today (Tuesday 21 January) on the proposed Willis Bond & Co concept design for a new building in the north Kumutoto area of Wellington’s waterfront, and on options for nearby public space.

Wellingtonians have until 5pm, Friday 28 February to have a say.

Willis Bond was chosen by Wellington Waterfront Ltd (WWL) as the preferred developer of Site 10 in the Kumutoto precinct after a rigorous selection and evaluation process that included not only assessment by WWL and Council officers, but also the Council’s Technical Advisory Group (TAG) and independent experts.

Mayor Celia Wade-Brown says the waterfront is fundamental to Wellington’s sense of place and it’s important that the public has a say.

“At this northern end of the waterfront we have an exciting opportunity to complete the waterfront promenade, create more attractive public spaces, and integrate this location into the life of the central city.

“The Council wants to hear what people think about the preliminary concept design of the proposed building, and adjacent public areas.”

WWL Chief Executive Ian Pike says: “The Willis Bond proposal would revitalise the area that’s currently used for motorhome parking alongside Waterloo Quay, between Waterloo Quay Apartments and the Whitmore Street entrance to the waterfront.

“The proposed six-storey building, designed by Athfield Architects, provides a good mix of commercial, retail and public areas, with five levels of office space, as well as a ‘green roof’.”

It includes a three-storey high civic portico entry to the building, complemented by high-quality landscaped public space. There would be a landscaped, sheltered public area outside, and covered pedestrian walkways around the building and through the ground floor.

On the Waterloo Quay side, a building colonnade will provide a sheltered public walkway and cycleway from the Whitmore Street gates to opposite the railway station.

The overall height of the building, while higher than the suggestion in the Environment Court decision, is regarded as generally being in scale with its neighbours. The top floor of the building is stepped back on all sides so it would only be visible from a distance.

Councillor Andy Foster, Chair of the Transport and Urban Design Committee, says the commercial development by Willis Bond will pay for the improvements to adjacent public space (including Site 8) and provide a return to the Council through rates and a long-term lease.

“The proposal will revitalise this part of the waterfront and extend the city’s unique opportunities for recreation, cultural activities and employment.”

Councillors will further consider the proposed designs in early April following the public consultation.

Submissions can be made on the Council’s website at www.Wellington.govt.nz/kumutoto

ENDS

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