From better public transport services to improved biodiversity, hundreds of Waipā residents have shared their views on what is most important to them for the future of the district.
Waipā District Council has received more than 1000 pieces of feedback on the draft Ahu Ake – Waipā Community Spatial Plan since starting engagement with the community in mid-February. Council group manager strategy Kirsty Downey said to have heard from so many people at this stage in the campaign was encouraging.
“We are more than halfway through our conversations and community events and are blown away with the amount of insightful feedback we have received. Hearing from residents and understanding what they want to see for our future as well as hearing their feedback on the draft spatial plan is a critical part of this process.”
Downey said there had been support in many communities for improvements to walking and cycling facilities and bus services, the planting of more native vegetation in parks and open spaces and increased protections around highly productive soils. There had also been a mix of support and concern about the development of more housing choices (duplexes, townhouses and apartments) in Cambridge and Te Awamutu.
“These are just some of the themes we are seeing coming through. We’ll use this feedback, along with what else residents have told us, to refine and further develop the draft spatial plan before we share it with the community for further feedback later this year.”
Council has held 11 events in eight towns and villages across the district over the past four weeks. More are planned in the coming weeks.
“It has been fantastic to get out there to meet with people and have these important discussions. We have been pleased with the numbers of people who have joined us so far at each event,” Downey said.
Event information can be found at www.ahuakewaipa.nz/events. Residents can also have their say on the draft plan online at www.ahuakewaipa.nz/have-your-say or by picking up a hardcopy survey available at both council offices and libraries in Cambridge and Te Awamutu. Feedback on the draft plan is open until 5pm Monday 27 March 2023.