The first to apologize is the bravest. The first to forgive is the strongest. The first to forget is the happiest. Unknown


                                                Council responses ... on-going...

Question:      Can TDC / Cultural Precinct Project (CPP) ask Warren Mahoney (WM) for a proposal for museum/library/arts                                                       (MLA) centre with landscaping as another option for Feb19.                                                         

                      - WM have all the relevant information and modelling available / it would be relatively quick, easy and cheap to render                                         another  concept.

                     -  The CAB may be at a different location (than the Domain) so it would be a great opportunity to 're-vamp' the domain area.

                     -   It would be a great PR exercise for the public to see TDC / CPP offering another choice, rather than just the current 'CAB or                             nothing' options for the domain.

Response:    [Philip King] The options under consideration at this stage are where the civic administration building will be located which                             are either on the Tongariro Domain, 72 Lake Terrace or Tūwharetoa Street car park. The business case will measure these                                 three options, as well as status quo.

                       If Councillors decide to build on either the 72 Lake Terrace or Tūwharetoa Street car park site, then what you have suggested                           below may well be investigated, but until then it isn’t part of the scope of the Cultural Precinct Project.

Comment:   So it's a council building project, not a cultural precinct project.

                      The "cultural" name-tag is a whitewash to over-ride ratepayers' continuing and vocal opposition.

                      A business case (including public opinion) should have been produced at the start of the project not the middle.

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Question:    Why is this a process of combining the council buildings and a cultural precinct when there appears to have been no                                          preliminary business case prepared...?                                                          

Response:    [Philip King] A business case will be developed to investigate any options that result from the master planning process.

Comment:    A preliminary business case should have be prepared first to assess feasible options. e.g. if the Reserves Act says CAB can't be                         built on the domain, then don't hire expensive consultants to provide options that aren't implementable. 

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Question:     Why are the council building rather than leasing?                                                        

Response:   [Philip King] Taupo District Council investigated leasing in the initial stages of the project and sought Expressions of Interest                          however following consideration of the responses they opted to build a new building.


Comment:   The 3 Expressions of Interest met all the criteria with investors prepared to pay for the building and lease to TDC. 

                      Current trends are for government buildings to be leased.  This is a low cost option for TDC which has been dismissed.                                      Financial information about this decision is heavily redacted (no indicative summary provided).

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Question:      Who are the stakeholders in this cultural precinct project?  

Response:   [TDC document] "Ratepayers are the people / groups that need to be kept informed of key actions, but are                                                             not involved indecision making or delivery".


Comment:    Ratepayers should be involved in decision making - it's our money. This shows TDC's attitude toward ratepayers who are                                  paying for it - an 'us and them' attitude that is not conducive to listening.

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Question:    Why have you stated (on radio) and I quote "If they don't work, we'll rip them out"? [lights at Norman Smith]

Response:    [mayor Trewavas] "We will use them some where else".

Comment:    At an installation cost of $560,000 and a removal cost of c.$100,000? Experimenting is the extent of TDC's critical analysis.

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Question:    I have emailed councillor Park 4 times over the last 3 months (as well as all councillors) to my questions about 's                                                 resolution [lights to go ahead at Norman Smith], with no response from anyone.

Response:    [mayor Trewavas] "Sorry".

Comment:    That's it? One word? No explanation for a continued lack of correspondence and a contravention of TDC's own charter? No                              comment on the contradiction in the resolution that TDC won't go ahead until the Transport Strategy is done?

                        And still no response from Cr Park.

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Question:   Why are you "forging ahead" when you haven't even started the Transport Strategy?  


Response:    [mayor Trewavas] The transport strategy will be taking a strategic view of the whole transport network. We will not be looking                         at specific intersections and their treatments.

2nd response:  [mayor Trewavas] Following on from submissions to our Long-term Plan, we have decided to expedite a transport strategy                         which will take a good look at our wider road network including vehicle, pedestrian and cyclists movements as well as parking.

Comment:    One statement says no, the next says yes.

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Question:    Radio interview with Andrew Leitaua.

Response:    [mayor Trewavas] "A roundabout is too expensive....purchasing land...all that sort of thing...they've decided on a set of                                      traffic lights...give it a go, see what modelling says it will we'll see what happens, I'm just                                      hoping, I'm hoping."

Comment:   4 errors in 1 sentence. And "hoping"? Unbelievable. 

                      A roundabout can be 1/10th the cost of lights. No land is needed to purchase - TDC own 30m to the west. The consultants                                report and the computer modelling have fundamental errors.
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Question:   Why are you proposing this work, despite overwhelming international evidence showing that this is not the best option for                                intersection management (a roundabout at 1/10th the cost is) and local ratepayers being against this proposal (80% against                            lights in my online survey). 


Response:    [mayor Trewavas] "Modelling by our traffic engineering consultant showed the signalised intersection was more efficient than                         a rounabout" [sic].

Comment:    The modelling had significant errors which made it unreliable. TDC ignored this.

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Question:     At what stage are you (or contractors or similar) up to on acting on this resolution?


Response:    [mayor Trewavas] "A specific project manager will be appointed in the next week or so [Sep18] to implement the project"

Comment:    Again contrary to their own resolution which states they will install lights "pending...the Transport Strategy". And against                                 public opposition. 

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Question:    What is your view on Grant Smith's Traffic Design Group report?


Response:    [mayor Trewavas] "No comment"

Comment:    Perhaps they are too embarrassed to admit they have accepted a report that is full of errors? And paid $141,500 for it?

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Question:    Have you read my Henson Report which analyses the TDG report? Attached for your reference.


Response:    [mayor Trewavas] "No comment"

Comment:    Avoidance again.

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Question:    What public support do you have for this proposal (e.g. polls / surveys)? 


Response:    [mayor Trewavas] "Detailed in LTP submissions which are online"

Comment:    ThinkTaupo have read all of these - the vast majority are against lights at Norman Smith.


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Question:    ...ask one...



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Facts are obtained from TDC via Local Government Official Information and Meetings Act requests. Opinions are well researched from credible sources. ©2018 the thinktaupo team, created with

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