CBD make over can go ahead but councillors want the money spent wisely

Acting general manager Karen Roberts with mayor Cr Anne Jones
Acting general manager Karen Roberts with mayor Cr Anne Jones

Wellington's mayor Cr Anne Jones says progress can be made on the long wrangle over revitalising the town's central business district.Councillors have moved to organize another workshop to discuss suggestions by landscaping architects Moir and Associates for the reshaping of the western side of the street from Warne to Maughan.

Landscape architect David Moir discussed the latest CBD strategy at Wednesday night's Ordinary meeting.No work would be done on the eastern side at all under their recommendations but there is one big problem..the money.Its has 1.5million to use, $120,000 has already been spent so far on consultancy.

Councillors now have to try and come up with the right model which would suit ratepayers and still kick start the economy. At the same time ensuring the first stage comes under budget.Cr Jones said the council had to look at ''What we can do with the money we have'' which had come from the Cobbora Restart Fund.''We have told the community not $1 of ratepayers money would be spent on it,'' she said to fellow councillors.''I believe we can get something done''Cr Alison Conn moved a motion; A cost effective analysis be done and it would come back to council.'This is exactly what has to be done.'' she said.

Cr Pip Smith also concerned about the budget over run.Cr Conn's motion followed debate and concern over the costs. The council's acting general manager Karen Roberts said the work had to be contracted out '' There's no way we could do this.'' she said.Cr Rod Buhr asked any potential problems with damage to the wall. Moir and Associates says there are risks to the wall but these could be assessed and worked out. The wall or fence along Cameron park has been the centre of many submissions and controversy.Mr David Moir said the pavement work was critical to driving the project. The new proposal also keeps the taxi and bus stops on the western side and also positioning for caravans to stop.There is further work to be done on working though how many car parks could be lost in the CBD redevelopment.