Published 14 October 2009
Auckland City Council wants the decision on waterfront governance left until the new Auckland Council is set up next year.
The Government has proposed a waterfront development agency be established, and the council’s regional governance committee voted for deferral yesterday because working was still under way on whether this agency should be a council-controlled organisation or under specific legislation, what its ownership structure & lifespan should be, and how it would integrate with the cbd, the local board created under the new Auckland governance setup and the new Auckland Transport Agency.
Labour councillor Richard Northey suggested the waterfront agency be a council business unit, reporting to an advisory board, both with commercial property development expertise, and Cllr Leila Boyle suggested the alternative of a council-controlled organisation – a structure which has been keenly implemented by Manukau City Council.
Both those propositions were rejected by the council majority at the regional governance committee’s meeting yesterday. Committee chairman & deputy mayor David Hay didn’t want to see a board set up with no teeth: “If we’re going to have a world-class harbour edge, then I think we need some property entity to do that, not just some sort of advisory board. I also understand there’s some discussion that this whole thing has been kicked to touch (left to the new council).”
Council strategic analysts presented councillors with a report that considered 3 broad options for waterfront governance & delivery:
A waterfront development agency, with wide-ranging functions & significant autonomyThe new Auckland Council retaining responsibility for all waterfront functions, andA development agency with limited functions relating to commercial property development.
The strategists recommended the third option, giving the organisation limited functions.
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Attribution: Company statement, story written by Bob Dey for the Bob Dey Property Report.