A fundamental aspect of a democratic state is the right of its citizens to participate in decision-making processes. The success of development and participatory governance depends on both a robust state and an active society with healthy levels of civic engagement. Empowered and active citizenship is an end in itself: essential for inclusive growth and national ownership.
United Nations

Notes from 29 June 2017 meeting

Social Housing

  • Te Whare Oki Oki (formerly referred to as 'wet house') - 14 bed facility with 24/7 supervision of residents. To be a long term home not a doss house. Won't be near residential buildings due to cost of real estate. Will house men and women in separate spaces. Need to find funding of $800k per year - in talks with MSD. Likely to be 12-18 months or so off.  
  • Social housing in the city - currently 350 residences short. Need to be near transport links and good services. Looking to private providers to supply affordable social housing of 1-2 bedrooms, with council guaranteeing a 15-year lease.

Begging & anti-social behaviour - strategies

  • Re-activating street outreach teams and beefing up numbers from 2 July and involving Local Hosts too. Aim is to engage with those on the street
  • Providing meaningful day-time activity - WCC Community Networks team exploring options with various providers, eg 'drop in' centres
  • 2016 begging working group to be re-established and to specifically include the retail community and the Bankers Association
  • Suggestion for ICW to meet with DHB to lobby for funding & support for council, particularly in areas of community mental health care and addiction services .

Inner city population growth - what's the plan?

Current estimated population growth for the inner city, which includes Te Aro, Wellington Central and Thorndon-Pipitea, 20,425 in 2017 to 33,420 in 2043.

Concern was expressed re population growth in the CBD considering this is the area that will likely be the hardest hit in a significant quake. It was pointed out that although some apartment buildings may be livable following such an event, that should the CBD be red zoned all residents would need to leave the city and find alternative accommodation, both potentially challenging tasks.

Also, as regards housing to accommodate the expected population growth concern was expressed that the housing workshop held recently had concentrated solely on social housing and did not take into account others who may wish to live in the inner city, in particular the elderly and families, and what their needs might be. It was suggested that council needed to develop a comprehensive holistic urban plan as everything seemed ad hoc at the moment, including approvals to raise building heights.

Report of the Housing Taskforce - http://wellington.govt.nz/~/media/your-council/news/files/2017/mayors-housing-taskforce-report.pdf  seen as a start to addressing the urgent need for more housing. 

Downtown Levy - concern was expressed at a suggestion (from elsewhere) that these funds be used for things such as addressing the begging problem, which was not the original intention. It was made clear that we would not be in favour of this at all, and indeed as a 'targeted rate' this would be unconstitutional.

Resilience Project - successful meeting held to engage with apartment dwellers and start the conversation as to how we can make the inner city more resilient. Feedback being collated by council and next steps to be advised soon.


Notes from 24 April 17 discussions with the Lambton Ward councillors; Iona Pannett, Nicola Young & Brian Dawson 

  • Annual Plan Update - discussed the key proposals in the Draft Annual Plan and the implications for the inner city.  Of particular interest for our submission is the business case for supported living for the homeless, the inclusion of future work to address the increase in anti-social behaviours, including begging, in the 'on the horizon' under development projects, seismic building intelligence system.  Discussed the Housing First approach in Auckland which is receiving approx $3.75m from Ministry of Social Development, along with $1m from Auckland Council to house 472 homeless people and then immediately put wraparound services in place to address addiction and mental health issues. ICW is keen to see a similar initiative in Wellington.
  • Forward Plan of Work Programme - ICW requested that a forward work programme be made available to help with our planning of priorities and use of resources. Councillors are also waiting for this programme.
  • Public Spaces Bylaw Review - Councillors are unclear about the timeframe and urgency for this review. It is a wide ranging bylaw, which will bring up freedom camping, begging, street signage and a raft of other matters.
  • Joint Wellington Region Waste Management and Minimisation Plan - this provides highlight objectives and projects across the region, plus for Wellington City specifically.  Proposals are high level with the specifics as part of a later consultation phase.
  • Discussion on the antisocial behavior of Gorilla Man and his activities. WCC advises that his busking licence expires soon, and it will not be renewed.
  • City Shapers (formerly Wellington Waterfront) have been contacted about the need for signage for Whairepo Lagoon, previously not named and known as Frank Kitts Lagoon.
  • Seismic sensors on buildings, discussion on how body corporates could volunteer to have seismic sensors installed.  Council to discuss internally and with GNS and Quake Core.  

23 Feb 2017

The first of our bi monthly meetings with the Lambton Ward councillors Iona Pannett, Nicola Young & Brian Dawson. Here's what they said...

  • Public space bylaw review - advised of forthcoming review and subsequently ICW reps participated in an initial meeting to inform the scope of the review
  • Renaming of Frank Kitts lagoon - Whai Repo (refers to the eagle rays that come into the lagoon).  We asked what happened to the proposed name following consultation.  Clr Young followed up with Ian Pyke of Lambton Harbour Management who said that it had been approved by the NZ Geographic Board but wasn't being actively promoted. Reluctance to put signs up as too many signs already. Expectation was that use would come from being used, but not sure how that happens when no one knows the name.  
  • Begging - update on what steps WCC was taking to implement the policy it agreed on; no further resources had been allocated and Clr Dawson was working with officers to investigate other options and establish costs. Discussed that retailers are not aware that street furniture can be removed and they need to log it with WCC.