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Kapiti Coast Roundup

Kapiti Coast Roundup

Waikanae East to Benefit From Emergency Vehicle Access Crossing

A gated emergency vehicle only access crossing will be established across the railway line in Waikanae to ensure access to Waikanae East is retained in the event of the Elizabeth Street level crossing being obstructed.

The construction of the emergency vehicle only access crossing was approved by the Kāpiti Coast District Council’s Operations and Finance Committee on 6 July 2017 as part of the Council’s 2018/19 long term plan programme.

Waikanae Community Board Chair Jocelyn Prvanov says the decision follows concerns raised by the Board over a number of years about emergency response vehicles not being able to reach Waikanae East residents if access to Elizabeth Street is blocked.

“While it is very unlikely that access to Elizabeth Street would be completely blocked the potential consequences of emergency services not being able to get through is high so we welcome the Committee’s decision to prioritise an alternative access route,” Ms Prvanov said.

The gated emergency vehicle only point will be established approximately 60 metres north of the Waikanae River Bridge. The gated access will cross the railway line and provide a safe passage for emergency vehicles through the Goodmans Yard onto Anne Street and Elizabeth Street.

The gated access won’t impact road users or the current road layout as it will be purposefully constructed for emergency vehicles only.

Waikanae Ward Councillor Michael Scott says he is pleased the Council has been able to gain land owner approval to establish emergency access route through Goodmans yard.

“Over a typical 24 hour period during the week around 80 passenger trains and 16 freight trains pass over the Elizabeth Street level crossing. The decision to construct the emergency vehicle only access crossing is of critical importance to residents in Eastern Waikanae,” the Councillor said.

TRANSPORT AGENCY FUNDING INVESTMENT AUDIT GIVES COUNCIL THE THUMBS UP

A recent audit of the New Zealand Transport Agency’s investment in the Kāpiti Coast District Council’s land transport programme has found Council procurement and financial practices to be in good shape.

Infrastructure Services Group Manager Sean Mallon says the purpose of the audit is to provide assurance that the New Zealand Transport Agency’s $8 million investment in the Council’s land transport programme is being well managed and delivering value for money.

“Transport Agency funding accounts for almost fifty percent of the total budget required to maintain our local roading and shared path network so it’s critically important that it’s managed responsibly.”

The report that was shared with the Council’s Audit and Risk Committee last week shows the Council is achieving good network outcomes as a result of good procurement processes and robust financial management.

Audit and Risk Committee Chair Councillor Mike Cardiff says the report demonstrates that the New Zealand Transport Agency’s investment in Kāpiti is in safe hands.

“It commends the Council’s management practices citing that there are good processes and supporting documentation in place to ensure the Council is getting value for money,” Councillor Cardiff said.

The New Zealand Transport Agency’s investment funding rate for the Council was 48% in the 2016/17 year. The rate will increase to 49% for this financial year, 50% in 2018/19 before reaching the maximum rate of 51% in 2019/20.

The Transport Agency also provides funding assistance for selected capital projects such as the Council’s Stride ‘n’ Ride Kāpiti Coast initiative which aims to improve walking and cycling connections between the district’s town centres and the Mackays to Peka Peka Cycleway, Walkway and Bridleway.

Councillor Cardiff says the Council would need to significantly increase rates or reduce levels of service if it was not able to secure funding from the New Zealand Transport Agency.

“The Council looks after more than 800 kilometres of local roads, shared paths and footpaths at an estimated cost of $11million per annum. Ensuring the Council meets the New Zealand Transport Agency’s funding requirements is a priority.”

NEW MEMBERS APPOINTED TO ART PANEL

The Kāpiti Coast District Council has appointed five members to its Public Art Panel.

The panel is appointed by Council to assist Council to implement the Public Art Policy, by acting as an expert advisor on the Council’s public art programme, and by making decisions on the selection of public artworks.

Council sought nominations from Te Whakaminenga o Kāpiti and Mahara Gallery Trust, and expressions of interest from the public.

As a result, Deputy Mayor Janet Holborow, Mahara Gallery director Janet Bayly, local artists Tracey Morgan and Deb Donnelly, and public art consultant Amanda Waijers have all been appointed to the Panel.

Community Services Group Manager Max Pedersen notes that these appointments bring broad experience to the panel.

“I’m glad to have the public art panel in place and am looking forward to them offering their expert advice on public art for the district.”


KĀPITI CREATIVES INVITED TO MAKE THEIR MARK ON PARAPARAUMU LANEWAY

The Kāpiti Coast District Council is calling for big thinking artists and creatives to stamp their mark on Kāpiti Lights.

The Kāpiti Lights area is being upgraded as part of the Council’s work to transform and improve the Paraparaumu town centre. The upgrade aims to make the area more pedestrian friendly and help create a setting that supports new and existing shops to thrive.

The upgrade is being undertaken in three stages with work to improve the Coastlands Parade laneway and Coastlands/Kāpiti Lights connection underway.

Infrastructure Services Group Manager Sean Mallon says plans for the laneway include a public art installation or a mural to improve the vibrancy of the area.

“The Council’s Public Art Panel will identify creative ideas that will help us take the physical upgrade to the next level,” said Mr Mallon.

The Council is now inviting the creative community to submit bold and unique concepts for transforming the exterior walls of a Coastlands Parade laneway building.

“This is a fantastic opportunity for Kāpiti artists to be a part of the transformation of Paraparaumu’s town centre,” said Mr Mallon.

A commission brief for the Kāpiti Lights laneway is available on the Council’s website – kapiticoast.govt.nz. Proposals are due in by Friday 15 September and following selection the Council aims to have artwork installed by the end of October 2017.


PEDESTRIAN AND CYCLIST SAFETY IMPROVED ON TE MOANA ROAD

Work to upgrade the intersection of Te Moana Road and Park Avenue to improve pedestrian and cyclist safety and accessibility is almost complete.

A central refuge has been installed on Te Moana Road to improve pedestrian and cyclist access across Te Moana Road to Greenaway Road and the bus stops. The kerb line at the Te Moana Road and Park Avenue intersection has been moved to reduce traffic speeds and make it safer and easier for people to cross Park Avenue.

Infrastructure Services Group Manager Sean Mallon says the upgrade was in response to community consultation about improving cyclist facilities on Park Avenue.

“Through our community consultation it was widely acknowledged that traffic patterns and volumes have changed on Te Moana Road since the Expressway opened.

“The community identified the upgrades of the crossing points on Te Moana Road and reducing speeds as a priority so we’ve acted on this feedback.”

The Council still has some landscaping to do to finish the project but this should be completed in the next few weeks, subject to a dry spell of weather.

Mr Mallon says work to improve the intersection of Ngarara Road and Park Avenue is expected to commence later this year.

“This work forms part of a programme of works to make it safer and easier for pedestrians and cyclists to move between Waikanae’s beach area, the Mackays to Peka Peka Cycleway, Walkway and Bridleway and the town centre.”


WET WEATHER SLOWS DOWN WORK TO WIDEN WAITOHU VALLEY ROAD

A run of wet weather over that last month has slowed down progress to widen Waitohu Valley Road in Ōtaki.

Work to widen Waitohu Valley Road to address safety concerns raised by residents through the 2016/17 Annual Plan commenced in June.

Infrastructure Services Group Manager Sean Mallon says at this stage Council contractors are still on track to have the work completed by the end of September but wet weather is hampering progress.

“Approximately 50 percent of the road widening has been completed and sealed, with another 10% nearing completion. Work to complete the balance is progressing as weather allows,” said Mr Mallon.

Traffic management will remain in place on Waitohu Valley Road until the work is complete.


COUNCIL PARTICIPATES IN WORK READY KĀPITI YOUTH & EMPLOYER MIXER EVENING

Kāpiti youth will be encouraged to explore opportunities to work for the Kāpiti Coast District Council at next week’s Work Ready Youth & Employer Mixer Evening.

Work Ready Kāpiti, a joint initiative between the Kāpiti Coast Chamber of Commerce, the Kāpiti Coast District Council and the Youth Employment Strategy Group, aims to help 16-25 year olds to gain the skills required to secure local employment.

The Youth & Employer Mixer Evening aims to provide opportunities for employers and young people to meet each and discover what type of jobs are available on the Coast and talk about the skills needed. More than 30 businesses are participating in the event.

Organisational Development Manager Dianne Andrew says the Council welcomes the opportunity to participate in the Youth & Employer Mixer Evening.

“Our cadet programme offers an opportunity for local school and college leavers and graduates that want to experience all that the Council has to offer and we’re keen to meet young people who have a real interest in making a positive contribution to the Kāpiti Coast community.”

Youth and employers who are interested in registering for Work Ready’s Youth & Employer Mixer Evening on Tuesday 22 August are encouraged to visit workreadykapiti.com.

LOOKSEE CAMPAIGN ATTRACTS GLOBAL TECH TALENT TO THE REGION

The Wellington Regional Economic Development Agency, with support from the Kāpiti Coast District Council and the Kāpiti Coast Chamber of Commerce, is hosting an event for businesses that need help attracting tech talent.

The “LookSee Wellington next steps event” provides opportunities for business to hear from representatives from the Wellington Regional Economic Development Agency (WREDA) and WorkHere, the organisations responsible for the recent LookSee Wellington campaign, about how to access their database of qualified tech candidates who are keen to move to the region.

Kāpiti Coast District Council Programme Design and Delivery Manager Tania Parata says with an increasing number of businesses choosing to call Kāpiti home attracting and retaining tech talent is key to supporting business growth.

LookSee Wellington week happened in May. It involved bringing global tech talent to Wellington to understand what it is like to live and move to the region. Candidates were also given the opportunity to meet with some of the 52 employers who had signed up to LookSee at that time.

Businesses who are interested in hearing more about how LookSee can help them attract global tech talent are encouraged to attend the free Kāpiti event on Friday 25 August between 12pm and 1pm at the Kāpiti Community Centre, 15 Ngahina Street Paraparaumu.


PAEKĀKĀRIKI SEAWALL CONSTRUCTION DELAYED

The Kāpiti Coast District Council’s plans to start building the replacement seawall along The Parade in Paekākāriki this financial year have been delayed.

The seawall has been in place for 38 years and has reached the end of its life. The Council made $10.9million available in its Long term plan 2015-35 to fund the renewal of the existing seawall.

Infrastructure Services Group Manger Sean Mallon says the project has been delayed in response to an external peer review of the original proposed option, which involved using a form of PVC sheet piles.

“The peer review has highlighted some issues with the PVC option that can be designed around but the Council has decided that this is not something it wants to take any further.

“The PVC piles allow for some flexibility when under surcharge. Aesthetically this would appear like a bulge in the wall and this was deemed unacceptable, so we are now looking at alternative material options like concrete, timber, and rock,” said Mr Mallon.

Work was scheduled to commence this financial year with an expected project completion date of June 2019.

“The delay in starting work may impact our maintenance budget as we will need to maintain the existing seawall. However, it is important that we take the time to get this right.”

Revised plans and costs for the renewal of the existing seawall are expected to be presented to the Council later this year.


ends

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