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Raglan CBD in line for major growth

Raglan’s central business district is set for a big expansion if proposals put to a Waikato District Council committee last week get the green light.

Twenty five properties in Bankart Street, Wainui Road and Wallis Street would be rezoned from living to business under a plan change recommended by the council’s strategic planning and resource management team at a strategy and finance committee meeting chaired by Raglan ward councillor Clint Baddeley.

The plan change covers 13 properties on the south and east sides of Bankart Street – the other side of the road from where the new Raglan Four Square looks set to open any day now – and another three around the corner in the short section of Wainui Road running up to the corner of Stewart Street.

Nine Wallis Street properties backing on to the existing CBD would also be rezoned from living to business.
The staff report to last week’s meeting emphasised the proposed rezoning followed requests made either during community consultation or by individual landowners. It added the proposed zoning would “reflect the current or proposed use of the properties”.

A number of the requests for rezoning had been made since the withdrawal of the council’s controversial variation 15, a proposal which among other things would have changed the whole look and character of Cliff Street.

Council staff argued last week against a do-nothing option because, they said, it did not address the “pressing issues” [for more business-zoned properties]. They also pointed out much of the work required for the rezoning, or plan change 14 as it’s been labelled, had been completed during consultation staff undertook as part of the Raglan town centre spatial plan project.

But the report promised that before notifying the plan change – which is expected about October – council staff would undertake further consultation with the property owners affected.

The properties up for rezoning are 2, 4, 6, 8, 8A, 10, 10A, 12, 12A, 14A, 14B, 14C and 14D Bankart Street; 8, 10 and 12 Wainui Road and 9, 11, 13, 15A, 15B, 17, 17A, 17B and 19 Wallis Street.

Also earmarked for rezoning under plan change 14 – whose next stop is a full council meeting – are two blocks of Maori land adjoining Poihakena Marae.

Rakanui 2A Block, which is at 222 Wainui Road, and Rakanui 1B Block, at 113-117 Wainui Road, would be rezoned from coastal to Pa, a move the council says would enable the land’s owners “to undertake papakainga housing or economic activities … consistent with Pa zone properties”.

A rezoning from rural to light industrial of some Tasman Lands property on SH23 is also proposed.
The plan change, once it went through, would be incorporated in the currently operative Waikato district plan.


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