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Mackenzie Spatial Planning project

Community workshops outline communities' passion for the future.

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The Mackenzie District Council is praising the communities of the District's townships and settlements after two rounds of community meetings to set the direction for the Mackenzie Spatial Plans.

The Mackenzie Spatial Plans will create a 30-year vision of what the future could look like in Fairlie, Tekapo (Takapō) and Twizel. The project will ensure our main townships are maintained as places for people, ensuring growth can occur in a way that benefits the local community and improves where we live. They will also offer a concept plan for the smaller settlements of Burkes Pass, Kimbell and Albury.

Over the past month, two rounds of community workshops have been held with community members and council officers to help outline and understand the problems and opportunities facing each township, as well as plan for what the future might look like given current growth projections and capacity constraints.

An initial round of workshops were held in early July to develop Investment Logic Maps (ILMs) for the main townships of Fairlie, Tekapo (Takapō) and Twizel. An ILM is a NZ Treasury supported investment tool that aims to communicate the complete investment story on a single page using language and concepts that are understandable to anyone.

Following these workshops, a second round of workshops were held with the smaller townships of Burkes Pass, Kimbell and Albury as well as more detailed optioneering and planning workshops in the main townships.

Mackenzie District Council CEO, Suzette van Aswegen, has been delighted with the passion and interest shown by the community members involved so far. "These have been pretty intensive workshops, and the discussions have been honest and not always easy - but that's the benefit of them. We very much appreciate the time and effort put in by all participants and staff.

"The project team have come away with a wealth of information about the communities' concerns, hopes and aspirations for their towns, and a much better idea of what the future could look like."

The next steps for the project will see the team use the information developed during the workshops to help shape a shortlist of options for each of the main townships. These will outline what the future could look like for each town across a range of scenarios reflecting different planning and zoning considerations.

At the same time, initial plans will be drawn up for the town centres of each main town and the smaller settlements that seek to outline a future vision for each area, and improvements that could be made to improve their layout and function. These options are expected to be shared with the community for feedback in late August / early September.

"We really want to get these options in front of as much of the community as we can to ensure the feedback we receive reflects the desires of our district's people. The information will be fed into our analysis and directly inform the direction the project takes and the preferred options for each area." said van Aswegen.