A Cromwell master plan being developed to address the district’s growth could provide a template for other plans throughout the region, Central Otago District Council leaders say.
The Cromwell “Eye to the Future” master plan aims to set a clear direction for growth in the Cromwell area, creating an “integrated planning approach” to future development and a strategic vision to guide growth and investment decisions.
The first master plan workshops are being held next month, and will involved community and business groups, Cromwell Community Board members and council staff.
Another round of public workshops is being held on June 2 and 6, and more will be held in July.
Cromwell Community Board chairman Neil Gillespie urged people to take part in the public consultation.
“The key to all of this is the public being involved, that’s the most crucial thing of all. Without them, it’s all for nothing.”
Mr Gillespie acknowledged public concern about some development and intensive subdivisions planned for the town and said it was vital proper infrastructure and facilities were in place.
“We want to make sure that is in place .. for the growth that will come.”
He said the Cromwell master plan was applying methods of community engagement that had been successfully used to get feedback about proposals for Clyde’s historic precinct and to solve traffic issues there.
Cromwell’s growth made its need for a master plan the greatest out of Central Otago’s communities, but plans for other towns, and possibly an overarching Central Otago master plan, could be useful.
Central Otago Mayor Tim Cadogan said he “totally endorsed” the Cromwell master plan and the significant public consultation it would involve, and also thought it could prompt others throughout the district.
He said growth was “a good problem to have”, but “it does bring its problems”.
He continued to be concerned about young families being priced out of the real estate market and wanted to try to maintain the egalitarianism for which Central Otago was known.
“It’s really important that everyone has a go. We’ve got to make space and room for everyone in Central.”
The Cromwell master plan will be a non-statutory document and programme outcomes will feed into the council’s annual plan, district plan review and infrastructure strategy. The programme will run until May 2019.