Welcome Bay supermarket decision delayed

The Waitaha Reserve is the preferred choice for a Welcome Bay supermarket. Photo: Google Maps.

Delays on a decision for a supermarket in Welcome Bay are being challenged by Tauranga City Councillor Bill Grainger.

Bill spoke out against the prosed time table, which was presented to the City Transformation Committee on Tuesday.

The supermarket is well down the Welcome Bay/Ohauiti study’s ‘to do’ list at stage five.

City council planning staff have just completed staged one and two and are beginning engagement with stakeholders before commencing the infrastructure assessment.

“I understood that this would be finished,” says Bill.

“I was told this would be finished this year. The thing is the people out there, the community out there are yelling loudly at myself, and probably one or two other councillors as well, as regards to this.

“The thing is as regards to this stage three and four, you have given us no idea of when that is going to be completed.

“What are we going to tell the community out there as regards to running in tandem with the so called workshop?

“There are major issues out there, and the two we do know is traffic and second one is, what are we doing as regards the supermarket? They deserve to know what is happening. And for me this is just one way of deferring it all.”

Given the transport issues and the fact the council planners are also contacting the Ministry of Education about schools, the study is going to take longer than they would like, says planner Andrew Meade.

“But there is no reason why the supermarket investigation needs to be tied to the outcome of this report,” says Andrew.

The housing development areas are on the outskirts, unlikely to be where a supermakert will be located.

“That riles me up even more,” says Bill. “We took the advice from the staff that we should run these two in tandem.

“This is just not good enough. The thing is we have and should have communicated better to our community out there. They deserve that. Now what are we going to do?”

Committee chair Larry Baldock told him the decision to align the supermarket project with the wider planning study was make by the Community and Culture Committee of which Bill is a member.

“So while staff gave advice it was a decision of that committee,” says Larry.

“And if you wish to revisit it, you need to bring it up at that committee or at full council.”

“That committee was advised from the staff that we run the two in tandem and we were notified also that it would be finished  by January/February this year,” says Bill.

“Now it is March/April, and now we are being told that it’s going further and that we can separate the two.”

“We are now moving into a debate. This is time for questions, and you have asked your question.” says Larry.

The Community and Culture Committee resolved on July 11 2017, to align the supermarket investigation with the Welcome Bay and Ohauiti Planning Study.

An update will be presented to the Community and Culture Committee on April 10.

The study so far finds the amount of land available for development in Ohauiti/Welcome Bay is 231 hectares. On the current development standard of 15 houses per hectare that means there is scope for about 3465 additional houses.

But that assessment includes large swathes of multiply owned Maori land. With that removed from the assessment the total will be 119 hectares providing room for an estimated 1,785 houses.

Current issues facing the areas are: Traffic congestion; lack of education options; lack of retail and commercial provision; pressure from developers to enable additional development; and infrastructure capacity constraints.

The study is driven by multiple proposals for Special Housing Areas in the Welcome Bay and Ohauiti area.

The SHA proposals are not going ahead until there is a broader and more comprehensive planning study for the area.

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The last thing we need in Welcome Bay

Posted on 05-04-2018 08:12 | By earlybird

is more houses, more people & more cars. Come on TCC, open your eyes. We already have significant traffic problems out here and we do not want it to get worse. For goodness sake don’t even think about a new subdivision, unless of course the property developer puts in a new bridge and highway BEFORE commencing the subdivision. Complete madness.

A simple problem really -

Posted on 05-04-2018 00:55 | By The Caveman

Sort out the TRAFFIC flows first - and the so called 350m bus lane will do NOTHING about the traffic flows OUT of Welcome Bay in the morning. Having watched the traffic/buses, it seems to me that the buses don’t go where 99% of the Welcome Bay residents want to go - when they want to go, otherwise they would be overflowing - thus the cars!. As for the "supermarket", that’s another problem - but again the TCC will NOT get that right either as far as traffic goes. AND, I would also like to be sure that if the TCC is going to give away (lease) long term a bit of TCC dirt, that its NOT at Mates Rates! It should be by way of commercial tender AND the tender results should be made public.

To much

Posted on 04-04-2018 21:31 | By MISS ADVENTURE

not enough "doing"! What possible reason would TCC staff have for runnign studies on any of all this anyway, this is simply a busiensss decision to be made by someone to build and operate. A bunch of planners will surely delay and then mushroom the whole thing into a typical TCC project of late, costly, heaps of debt and makes large losses... do they not know what "help" or "grease the wheels" means?

We're used to it

Posted on 04-04-2018 12:56 | By Chris

The people of Welcome Bay are used to this nonsense by now. Our suburb is treated as second class while all of Tauranga’s resources get directed to the Lakes, Papamoa etc.Unfortunately we get lied to by prospective councillors at every election about what they’ll do. That includes Mr Grainger who gets all upset and indignant and always has someone else to blame - hey Bill, do your job, exert your authority and quit your moaning.

Well said Bill

Posted on 04-04-2018 12:47 | By Kaimai

How about putting the "planners" up at election time. As I see it, the council is full of planners but there’s a shortage of planning - we need solutions, not hurdles!