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Rotorua PGF Project Updates
5 October 2018
Rotorua PGF Project Updates
Work to prepare for Rotorua’s lakefront development could start before Christmas and work on developments planned for Whakarewarewa Forest are scheduled to begin February 2019.
Elected members received an update on the two projects at today’s Operations and Monitoring Committee hui/meeting yesterday following last week’s announcement of $27.4m ($19.9m for lakefront and $7.5m for forest) from the Government’s Provincial Growth Fund (PGF). The $19.9m for the lakefront is the largest single allocation from the fund to date.
An initial grant of $800,000 from the PGF enabled Council to develop the business cases for applications for the project funding and to advance to detailed design so the projects can be progressed as soon as possible.
Included in Council’s 2018-28 Long-term Plan (LTP) the projects will provide the foundations for future private investment opportunities and are supported by iwi stakeholders as well as by Bay of Connections which has included them as priority projects for the wider Bay of Plenty region in the regional tourism strategy.
External funding was needed to get the projects underway. The lakefront development is a $40m project with Council agreeing in its LTP to invest $20.1m and $19.9m coming from the PGF. The forest project attracted $7.5m investment from Council and the same amount from the PGF. The PGF funding was announced last week (see THIS LINK for more about the announcement)
Council staff recapped key elements of the projects during yesterday’s Operations and Monitoring Committee hui/meeting and explained next steps and proposed phasing of work.
Council Chief Executive Geoff Williams said while the council was playing a key leadership role, the two developments were not council projects but partnerships, with stakeholders steering the direction and nature of the projects. He said the impact of the two developments would be far greater in value than the investment being made by council.
Public investment in the projects would have a multiplier effect, driven by private investment, such as had occurred at the Waipa mountainbiking hub, he said.
“It is the way economic development works – it’s not just about roads and infrastructure, it’s about enabling much broader investment that has a multiplier effect much bigger than the initial investment.”
For further information on both the Lakefront and Forest Projects go here