Category Archives: Meetings

Annual General Meeting 2022

The Newtown Residents’ Association Annual General Meeting was held on 19th September at 7:30pm, St Thomas’s Community Lounge 200 Riddiford St.

There was a small attendance, and a number of the Executive members were absent, for a variety of reasons, including the President and the Treasurer. However the meeting was ably chaired by Vice President Jane Patterson.

Jane moved from the Chair that the minutes from the last AGM, which had been circulated, be taken as read and accepted, and this was carried.

President’s Report:

Jane also summarised the President’s Report, outlining the activities of the Association and the submissions made on issues of interest and concern to the Association. A vote of thanks for the President’s work for the most recent year was carried by acclamation.

Treasurer’s report:

Michelle Wolland, the Treasurer, could not be present.  This report was held over until the next meeting.

Election of Officers – the following were elected unopposed.

President: Rhona Carson

Secretary: no nominations

Treasurer: Michelle Wolland

Vice President: Jane Patterson

Executive Committee: Carol Comber ,  Steve Cosgrove , Marion Leighton, Sam Somers, Penny Sturgess, Hilary Watson.

Other Business:

Moved by the Chair: that Peter Frater be made a life member in view of his considerable contribution over many years.  Carried by acclamation.

The AGM will be reconvened at the Residents’ Association meeting on October 17th to receive the Treasurer’s Report.

Notes from the August 2022 meeting

This meeting was held at the Community Lounge at St Thomas’s Church on Monday 15th August. These are notes from the discussion, see below for the full minutes.

WCC Waste Minimization Plan

WCC has a Draft Waste Management and Minimisation Action Plan. The expectation is that WCC will set up a working party about this, we are waiting to hear more.  We are interested to hear from people who would like to be part of this consultation.

‘Meet the Candidates’ Meetings

Greater Wellington Regional Council has 12 candidates, there are 9 candidates for Mayor,  Paekwakawa / Southern Ward has 10 candidates and the Māori Ward 3 candidates.

GWRC candidates are not invited to as many meetings as City Council candidates, but the issues GWRC are involved in have a big impact – e.g. public transport, LGWM, Wellington Water. The meeting agreed that a separate meeting for GWRC was a good idea; potential dates are 12th or 13th September.

We agreed to inviting Paekawakawa/Southern General Ward & Te Whanganui-a-Tara Māori Ward candidates to a meeting on 26th September, but were undecided about having the Mayoral candidates as well because of the large number of people that would be involved. There might be options for a separate meeting with the Mayoral candidates, or for attending one of the other meetings in the city. Sam Somers has organised an online ‘Its in the Ballot’ meeting for Mayoral candidates on September 7th.

It was decided that we would not have supper at the meetings as that would increase the Covid risk.

Picking up Rubbish

Rachel introduced the plan to organise an event in Newtown as part of Clean Up NZ week (17-23 September). The Sustainability Advisor at Wellington Hospital has approached us about a joint event the Hospital staff could take part in. Friday 23rd September is suggested as a day that would suit them. 

Rachel is willing to carry on with the organising, further details TBA.

Transport issues

Cycleway Consultation – this has restarted, following the resolution of the court injunction. Proposed changes:

  • At the corner of Riddiford Street and Mein Street, to continue the cycleway along the left hand side of the street and remove car parks outside Newtown School so cyclists can go straight ahead. This will need changes to traffic lights and phasing so cyclists and left turning cars don’t collide.
  • Cycle speed at the entrance to the hospital car park can be an issue.
  • The area where the bus lane ends and three lots of traffic merge needs adjustment.

Submissions are due by 31st August. It’s expected that the Councillors will make a decision on 15th September, and if approved work will start a couple of weeks after that.

‘Reshaping Streets’ – Waka Kotahi has opened consultation on proposed changes to legislation to make it easier for local authorities (like councils) to make street changes that support public transport, active travel and placemaking. Submissions are due on September 19th. See for more information.

Streets for People Announcement:  on Tuesday 6th September at 10.30am there will be a celebration at Newtown School as the Hon Michael Wood announces the councils (including Wellington) who have been selected for funding for transport changes. 

Wellington Water

There is continuing concern about the fluoridation issues.

There was a discussion about management of the organisation.

  • This is a long-standing issue
  • Perhaps there is a link between earthquakes and increased water leaks.
  • Wellington City Council is trying to improve mapping of pipes, creating a Digital Twin using some ‘Better Off Funding’.  The city is also using this fund to support social housing and other things.

Special Awards

Cr Fleur Fitzsimons noted that Association President Rhona Carson has recieved an Absolutely Positively Wellingtonian award for her work with the Association, Newtown Festival, and other community work.  Rhona was congratulated by the meeting attendees, and responded with thanks.  She noted that six present or past executive members of the Association have received these awards over the years: Martin Hanley (twice!), Anna Kemble Welch, James Coyle, Peter Frater, Rhona, and Tom Law who was also recognised for his many community contributions at the ceremony last week.

Proposed District Plan Consultation

There are accessible presentations about the Plan on the Council Website.

A planner at the library drop-in consultation was asked about limitations to building because of inadequate infrastructure, and said that Newtown will be a high priority for pipe upgrades.

There is one more month to get submissions in. Further opportunities to discuss submissions will be considered.

 Brief Notes about the July 2022 meeting

These were some of the topics dicussed. See below for a link to the full minutes.

Meet the Candidates meetings

We will be holding a meeting (or meetings) for local body election candidates at the Salvation Army Hall in September. We are waiting to see how many candidates there are, and whether we split into separate meetings for the Mayor, WCC Paekawakawa/Southern Ward and GWRC or try for some combination. 

Workingmens Bowling Club site, Owen St

Jane Patterson (NRA Vice President) outlined progress on plans for community use of the site. The Sustainability Trust made a successful funding application on behalf of the community based Owen St Project Group to engage a facilitator for wider community consultation, and Anne Cunningham was appointed. There has been a meeting with WCC Officers to discuss a way forward, which Jane attended, and the Council are expected to call for expressions of interest from potential users about the end of July. Cr Laurie Foon thanked the community for their initiative in progressing this project.

Proposed District Plan 

Submissions on the PDP are open until Monday September 12th. This statutory consultation process is more complex than making the usual submissions to WCC . There are details on the WCC website. 

WCC passed an amendment to the PDP designed to protect sunlight on Carrara Park and other open space Parks. Cr Laurie Foon was one of the Councillors in favour of this, and will make further enquiries about the details of how this works.

Reclamation of Town Belt area 

Carol Comber outlined a plan to rejuvenate some tracks on town belt land in Mt Cook, known as Gum Gully – near Brooklyn Rd and  the boundary with Brooklyn. The ‘Gum Gully Working Group’ want to apply for funding from WCC to buy tools to enable more people to volunteer to work on this. 

The meeting supported Newtown Residents’ Association being an umbrella organisation for this application. 

Newtown Festival followup 

Rhona advised that the Newtown Festival team applied to the Ministry of Culture and Heritage for funds to compensate people who had been booked for the 2022 Festival and lost income because it was cancelled. This was successful and the Festival is now busy paying a range of people – from artists, to production crew and infrastructure providers. The meeting attendees congratulated both the Festival team and the Ministry of Culture and Heritage for this positive outcome.

Planning is underway for the 2023 Festival, in the hope that this will be able to go ahead without further interruptions.

Wellington Heritage Week, 24th October- 6th November

There was discussion about arranging a Newtown History tour for Heritage Week.

Newtown Culture and Community Centre progress 

It is hoped that the work will be finished in November but it might be delayed. NCCC has received a $250,000 Lotto grant towards the theatre equipment – we were one of the groups supporting what was a successful application. 

Notes from the June Meeting

The monthly meeting was on June 20th at the City Mission/St Thomas’s Community Lounge.

Mass Rapid Transit through Newtown

The main topic was a presentation from Daran Ponter, Chair of the Greater Wellington Regional Council, on Let’s Get Wellington Moving, and in particular on the potential impact of Mass Rapid Transit through Newtown.

All four LGWM options have MRT through Newtown. Daran is keen to get this message to the community because LGWM will have very broad impacts. More road space will be required to make room for a MRT route as well as car, bus and cycle lanes. This potentially includes the removal of the historic shops at the Adelaide Rd and Riddiford St intersection as it would be hard for mass transit to use that intersection as it stands.

See the full minutes for more about the discussion, and the LGWM website more about the project.

Alistair Henshaw – Predator Free Wellington, on moving into Newtown more intensively. 

Alistair described how the project to eradicate pests started in Miramar with great co-operation from local people, and how the team are now moving into the Southern suburbs. Progress has been made in Island Bay, and Newtown is next.

They need about 7000-10,000 ‘permissions’ from residents to place very safe bait stations to target rats and mustelid eradication. See

The Proposed District Plan

Hilary Watson (Newtown RA Executive member) outlined the next steps. The Proposed District Plan will be voted on by the WCC Pūroro Āmua/ Planning and Environment Committee on June 23rd. When it’s approved the proposed plan will be notified and there will be 6 weeks for public submissions between July and September. Hearings will be at a later date – expected to be early next year.

The June 23rd meeting is a final opportunity for Councillors to make amendments to the plan before it is notified. There was agreement at the meeting that Newtown Residents’ Association continues to support it’s previous submission and calls on the Council to reinstate the character areas as recommended by Council officers for inclusion in the Spatial Plan. We do support intensification and welcome additional residents to Newtown, but feel this should be managed and planned primarily along the main spine of the suburb. 

Notes from the May Meeting

Brief Notes from the Newtown Residents’ Association Meeting, Monday 16 May 2022 – see below for the full minutes.

This meeting was held in person, for the first time in 2022. The venue was the Wellington City Mission/St Thomas’s Community Lounge, and we are very grateful to be able to use this space.

There was a comparatively small attendance, with many apologies because the meeting was being held on Easter Monday.

In Memory

The meeting took a moment to remember Effie Rankin who passed away in March, aged 94, and was to be farewelled with a service at the Salvation Army on Wednesday 18th May.  People shared memories of Effie, who  continued attending Association meetings into her early 90s.

Arthur Winther, long time Newtowner who passed away in April, was also remembered.

Alcohol Harm Reduction Project

Rhona Carson (Association President) welcomed Kate Collyns, the Community Champion at Wellington and Hutt Valley Community Law for the Alcohol Harm Reduction Project. 

Kate outlined the background and current work of the Project. The Community Law Centres nationally have funding to coordinate responses to liquor licence applications, and they aim to work with communities who want to stand up for their wellbeing by engaging with the alcohol licensing process to oppose unethical and predatory businesses from getting alcohol licences.

Kate is interested in considering family and social harm from alcohol, in addition to health issues commonly raised.  These factors can all be raised in a submission.

The presentation was followed by discussion of a number of associated issues. 

It was agreed that, as far as we know, there are no current problems with the licensed premises in Newtown. We have been involved with objections to licence applications in the past, particularly for new off-licences. In general we haven’t objected to licence applications from the local bars and cafes.

It was noted that the Salvation Army and Police are strong supporters of objectors in Newtown.

Kate summarised her offer to help anyone who wants to object to a licence application.  She can be contacted through the Residents’ Association or Community Law.

The meeting thanked Kate for coming to talk with us.

There were brief comments on a number of other issues, including

Thank you to all the helpers at the “Wiggle for Wellbeing” free concert in Carrara Park on May 14th, and congratulations to James Cottrell of Origin Events for a successful event. The concert was supported by Newtown Festival and Wellington City Council, and our Association ran a free sausage sizzle. Particular thanks to Newtown New World for supplying the food, and to Jared Corston from WCC who spent all afternoon on the BBQ.

Is there a Newtown Police Officer? Yes, Sergeant Mike Byrne and Constable Bede Gugliemoni, based in Kilbirnie, work extensively in Newtown.

Workingmen’s Bowling Club Site in Owen St: Funding of $1.5 million for developing this site was agreed by Wellington City Councillors at a meeting on Feb 3rd but didn’t appear in the draft Annual Plan.  Our ward Councillors will pursue getting the funding added to the 2022/2023 WCC Budget.

Notes from the April Meeting

We met on 18 April  2022,  via zoom.

These are brief notes of the main items discussed; see below for a link to the full minutes.

Local Body Elections & Proposed Meet the Candidates meetings

Nominations for Mayor, Councillors and Greater Welllington Councillors  open on 15th July and close on 12th August, so we won’t know till then how many candidates there are.  The number of nominations will impact the number of meetings required – eg if the numbers are quite low we could combine Mayor, Council and GWRC in the same meeting, but last election we needed separate meetings for each of these so everybody could have time to speak. We will plan to have meetings around the end of August, beginning of September – voting papers will be sent out from 16th September, and voting closes on 8th October.

Sam Somers introduced ‘It’s In The Ballot’.  This was trialled at the last elections and it involves meetings with candidates, broadcast on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube.  Random questions are selected in the style of ‘Its In The Bag’.  Sam has got a group together to help run these meetings for the coming elections and intends to have shows for all wards and all Councils in the GWRC area.  

Update from the WCC Cycle Team about the transitional bike path from Mein St to the city

Jane Patterson outlined the history of this, then introduced the Council officers Bri Peters, Claire Pascoe and Vida Christeller who had come in on a public holiday to korero with us.

There had been a petition presented to Council to delay the start of the cycleway trial for more consultation, but at the Council meeting on 14th April the Councillors voted 10-4 against delaying the trial and 14-0 in favour of a number of other proposals. [*Note – an extract from the Council meeting minutes is copied at the end of the minutes.]  Because of this the work on creating the bike path was about to start; see the minutes for more details.

The formal consultation will start after the bike path is operational, so people can give feedback on how it works in practice.

Forthcoming consultations and requests for submissions:

WCC Economic Wellbeing Strategy

  • Submissions are due on 25 April [later postponed till 1st May].
  • Rhona Carson outlined some parts
    • The Strategy states that Cultural, Social, Economic and Environmental factors should be taken into account for well being.
    • There are six outcomes being targeted: Sustainable business and career pathways, Circular Economy, Business friendly city, Centre of Creativity and digital innovation, celebration of our capital city status, Dynamic city heart and thriving suburban centres.  These are all good aims, but the concrete actions on how these outcomes might be met are less obvious.
  • Rhona asked anyone interested to read the strategy and put forward ideas for a possible submission from the Association. 

WCC 2022-23 Annual Plan

There are two major changes from the Longterm Plan that Council wants feedback about – the future funding of Council housing and the future of the Southern Landfill.

Council Housing 

  • The Council has put forward 2 funding options – continue with Council ownership and management of the housing, or set up a Community Housing Provider (CHP) to take it over. There are 3 options for a CHP – Council sells its housing to the CHP, the CHP leases the housing and is responsible for tenancies, repairs and maintenance – this is the WCC preferred option, or the CHP leases the housing, manages tenancies and minor repairs but Council manages major maintenance.

Landfill Options

  • New landfill on the current site.
  • Build a huge incineration plant.  This requires a minimum amount of waste, which conflicts with our waste minimisation policy.
  • Close the landfill and send waste to the Hutt or Porirua.

There was support at the meeting for building a new landfill on the current site.

James noted the private landfill at Happy Valley which takes most demolition waste from the city, and the risk of pollution from this site. 

Other matters in the 2022-23 Annual Plan

There are a few other changes from the long-term plan, including  funding for Khandallah Pool, but not the funding allocated to the Workingmen’s Club site. There are also some proposed increases to encroachment fees and changes to other Council charges.

Submissions about the Annual Plan are due by 15th May. People who would like to be involved in discusssions about submissions are invited to make contact on

The Ministry for the Environment Consultation on Transforming Recycling

Submissions on Transforming Recycling are due by 8th May. People who would like to be involved in discussions about submissions are invited to make contact on

Notes from the March 2022 Meeting

The Newtown Residents’ Association Meeting 21 March 2022 took place on zoom.

These are a few of the issues discussed.


Rhona Carson, Association President, introduced Rachel Bolstad, who organised a successful ‘plogging’ (Picking up Litter while JOGGING) outing on March 6th, picking up rubbish on Newtown streets. This was motivated by Michelle Stronach-Marsh who is organising this regularly on Petone Beach. Michelle helped with organisation and providing specialised equipment in the form of pick up sticks (long handled tool for gripping small objects). About a dozen people came for about 90 minutes. They set out from Carrara Park and picked up about eleven large bags of rubbish.
There was a general discussion about the history of the Association’s support for Keep Newtown Clean (now discontinued), and how Plogging could be made a regular event.


Patrick Morgan outlined the decisions made at the Council meeting of 10 March, which approved all the secondary streets noted in the Paneke Pōneke – Bike network plan and also added several more streets which had been suggested during the WCC Consultation last year. The transitional bike path from Mein St along Riddiford St to Adelaide Rd and onwards to the city had already been approved and was due to be implemented in April.

Brian Dawson, from Paul Eagle’s office, relayed information from businesses in Riddiford St North and Adelaide Rd who were objecting to the lack of consultation about losing the parking and loading zone near the Adelaide Rd intersection. He and MP Paul Eagle had an appointment to discuss this with the Council.  Martin Hanley referred to the “John St Protocols” drawn up in 2013 when the impact of construction of the Countdown Supermarket had very damaging effects on the businesses there, noting how disappointing it was that these same businesses were being affected now. Cr Laurie Foon asked for a copy of this agreement, and outlined the work that is being done by Council Officers to find mitigation for the negative effects. Marion Leighton articulated the views that support the Council position of going ahead with the current plans.

Further discussion of proposals for the future use of the ex-bowling club in Owen St

This is a ‘developing story’.  Rhona described a meeting, organised by ReBicycle, of a number of community groups who discussed potential uses that would be in line with the Council’s stated plans for the site. Attendees at that meeting noted that there were other members of the community not represented and were looking into how to facilitate wider representation. Cr Laurie Foon agreed that it is a good idea for the community to come forward with ideas for use.

WCC Consultations 

Rhona reminded attendees of the Council Open Spaces and Recreation survey closing April 8th and the Economic Wellbeing  Strategy consultation, open till 25th April.

Welcome to Nureddin Abdurahman 

Rhona thanked Nureddin (recently announced as a WCC Paekawakawa/Southern Ward candidate on the Labour Party ticket) for coming to our meeting. He introduced himself, describing how he got involved in the community.

Notes from the October 2021 Meeting

The Newtown Residents’ Association October Meeting was at 7.30pm, 18 October 2021, held at St Thomas’s Community Lounge 200 Riddiford St.

This is a summary of some of the main points –

Workingmen’s Bowling Club, Owen St – Cr Fleur Fitzsimons reported that the Club has given up its lease. WCC  now owns the building and they don’t want to demolish it. Council officers are concerned however at the cost of repairs. The future use is not decided. A number of community groups are interested.  NRA is very clear that we can’t lose community space in Newtown, and our Councillors agree.

The District Plan, Cycleways and LGWM are all coming up for community consultation between November 2nd and December 14th.  At the time of this meeting the District Plan was due to be discussed by Wellington City Council’s Planning Committee on 20th October, and then released for consultation.

  • On 1 November at 5.30  there is a webinar introduction to the whole plan. Register for the launch event here.
  • 20 November there is an in-person Roadshow at the Salvation Army Hall 10am – 3pm, with input from the WCC planning team and the engagement team.

(Update –the Draft DP was adopted by the Council on 20th October after considerable discussion and some proposed amendments.  See here for the minutes, a useful Q&A document and the link to watch the meeting. In the meantime a new Government directive about intensifying housing was announced, so the Draft DP will need considerable revision.)

Introduction to LIVE WELLington. At the Association meeting in July we talked about the development of a group to promote density done well.  This organisation is now called ‘LiveWellington – a liveable city by design’.  Watch this space. The launch is expected to be 4pm November 14th at Mt Cook School.

The Government Housing Policy, with discussion of the Government Policy Statement on Urban Design and the National Policy Statement on Urban Design (which has the requirements for enabling ‘at least 6 storeys’ in large areas of our suburbs).

A Good News story followup about a WCC tenant who set up a small garden at her Council flat in Newtown, that was reported in the DomPost .  A garden supplies manager in Bulls liked the story and sent her a load of peastraw, compost and other gardening equipment, which she was very happy to receive.

The Newtown Festival – there is a lot of uncertainty about whether the Festival will go ahead as planned on March 6th – or the postponement date of April 3rd.  The Government announcements have said that Festivals will be able to operate with attendees having vaccine certificates – but it seems impossible to make sure that everyone at a free street Festival has a certificate, because there are a multitude of entrances, people living on site and a supermarket inside the Festival boundary.  However the Festival crew are going ahead with planning as if it is going to happen until there is more clarity about what will be happening in March (or April).

The meeting closed at 9.05pm. Next meeting November 15th, 7.30pm, same venue.

Minutes of the 2021 AGM

This meeting was 7.30pm Monday 20th September at the St Thomas’s / City Mission Community Lounge at 200 Riddiford St (a change from the usual venue at Newtown Hall because of Covid restrictions)

The AGM was followed by the usual monthly meeting business.

This is a summary of the meeting:

The Minutes of the 2020 AGM were taken as read and approved

Matters arising included the History Project.   Martin Hanley outlined the history of this (long-running) project.
It has now been prepared for publication as an online document.

President’s Report: This had been circulated, and is available online. Rhona summarised the report, with a month by month account of meeting topics, issues addressed and submissions made.

Treasurer’s Report: Michelle Wolland, our Treasurer, couldn’t be at the meeting.  Sam Somers read the Treasurer’s Report. There was a small operating surplus in the 2020-2021 financial year, and the Association has a healthy financial position. It was noted that we handle funding for Mount Cook Mobilised because they are not an incorporated society (Carol Comber is the link person between Mt Cook Mobilised and the Newtown Residents’ Association Executive).

Election of Officers:

President: Rhona Carson

Secretary: no nominations: Rhona noted that she had been acting as Secretary as well as President, and would be happy to hear from any member interested in this position.

Treasurer: Michelle Wolland

Vice Presidents: Jane Patterson & Martin Hanley

Executive Committee: Sam Somers , Carol Comber , Peter Frater, Marion Leighton, Steve Cosgrove, James Coyle, Hilary Watson, Penny Sturgess, Adam Awad

The Annual General Meeting was declared closed at 8:32

September Monthly Meeting started at 8:33. The main topics were:

Wellington City Council Representation Review

Sam Somers circulated and spoke to his written notes on this subject. Sam is doing a personal submission and encouraged others, including the Association, to make submissions. Consultation closes 4 October

There was a general discussion about issues pertaining to Council and Councillors.  In particular it was noted that before wards were introduced Councillors almost always came from the northern areas.

Community Centre Upgrade: a report from Tom Law (Chair of the Newtown Community and Cultural Centre Trust)

This is going very, very, slowly.  Plans are on the City Council website, and on the NCCC website.

  • The Theatre will be upgraded. An application has been made for Lottery Grants Board Funding, which was supported by the Newtown Residents’ Association and Newtown Festival. 
  • Escalating building costs have led to a request to Council for more funds.
  • Lift and office space upgrades are planned.
  • The Community and Cultural Centre is nearing the end of its one-year lease in the current replacement location (2 Green Street).  An extension to this is being progressed.

Update on Jared Corston’s role as WCC Community Liaison officer

  • Jared now has a wider range of responsibilities liaising with Community Centres across the City. However he is still focussing on Newtown issues. As before he asks people to use the WCC fixit app to report issues, but he is happy to be contacted when this doesn’t solve the problems, or if there are other Newtown issues to discuss. He can be contacted at
  • CAB is currently occupying Kia Ora Newtown.  Jared has a desk at the library and uses community spaces for meeting people.
  • Steve asked about what has happened to the Keep NZ Beautiful mural from 15 Constable St?  This needs to be followed up.

The new venue

Martin Hanley moved a motion of thanks to Mark and Kirsty from St Thomas’s for the use of the Community Lounge for this meeting, and suggested we also have the October meeting there.  This was supported by the meeting.

The meeting closed at 9:05. The next meeting will be on October 18th, 7.30 pm, at the St Thomas’s Community Lounge 200 Riddiford St.

Notice of the 2021 Annual General Meeting

The Newtown Residents’ Association Annual General Meeting will be on Monday 20th September 2021, 7.30 pm.

Please note a change of venue!

This meeting will be held at the St Thomas’s and City Mission’s Community Lounge at 200 Riddiford St – in the same building as the Church.  The change from Newtown Hall is because of limited numbers allowed at Newtown Hall during covid delta level 2.

The AGM is when we elect the Association Officers and other Executive members for 2021-2022, discuss the year’s activities and plan for the future.

Nominees and nominators for the Executive need to be financial members of the Association; if you haven’t paid your subscription yet you can join at the start of the meeting.

The President (Rhona Carson) and Treasurer (Michelle Wolland) and Vice Presidents (Martin Hanley and Jane Patterson) are standing for re-election. Nominations for all positions can be taken at the meeting or conveyed to the President beforehand – please email

See here for the Minutes of the 2020 AGM

Minutes of the Newtown Residents’ Association Meeting, 16 August 2021

Notes from the meeting – see below for the full minutes.

Research participants sought: Yiwen addressed the meeting, describing his PhD research looking at engagement of ethnic minorities in community planning processes.

Spatial Plan process and outcome : Councillors affirmed willingness to meet and discuss. Next steps in the consultations were outlined. 

Climate change: Patrick Morgan led a brief discussion related to the steps we could take as individuals and as a community. Patrick will provide a written summary of the discussions. 

Wellington Residents Coalition request: The coalition would like to work with the Newtown Residents’ Association in the areas of housing, water and rates. We have agreed to send a representative, and that there are divergent views on the desirability of water metering. 

Laura Rosier history book: the first five chapters of the Laura Rosier history book on the built history of Newtown are now complete.  

New Consultation: Council survey on design of the roading intersection The council is asking for feedback from the community about safety improvements in Newtown. 

Don M. asked for the meeting to support a complaint to NZTA about an offensive number plate that he had spotted in Newtown, and offered the Newtown Library a copy of his photographic essay book.

Community composting: new community composting scheme. 

Community Gardening: Carrara Park: more soil testing required, and volunteers sought. 

Mental Health Awareness week free music festival: 12pm to early evening in Carrara Park on the 2nd of October

Notes from the meeting July 2021

The meeting was at 7.30pm on July 19th 2021 at Newtown Hall, 71 Daniell St. The discussion covered –

 1. Responsible Dog Owner Policy

The meeting supported the motion That Newtown Residents’ Association would like to request that the responsible dog owner policy applications start at the same time as notification for licensing occurs.

2. Spatial Plan process and outcome

Considerable discussion was held about the process and outcome of the Spatial Plan consultation.  A Wellington-wide umbrella group is being formed to promote density done well, and the meeting supported the motion That the Newtown Residents association welcome the development off Density Done Well and would like to keep in touch with this group.              

3. An introduction to the development of the WCC District Plan; Government consultation on GPS-HUD.

Martin Hanley outlined the purpose and development of a District Plan. The District Plan is a City Council document, but is guided by Government policy.  The GPS-HUD, the Government’s proposal for the future of the housing and urban development system in Aotearoa New Zealand, is open for consultation till July 30th.  After much discussion the meeting supported the motion That the Association put in a submission to this consultation that is reflective of the discussion at this meeting. 

4. The future of the Workingmen’s Bowling Club

The meeting supported the continued mixed community use of the land and buildings. 

5. Consideration of Heritage Buildings Places and Objects 

Consultation and competition.

  • There was a reminder that annual Subs are due. 

Notes from the Meeting, June 2021

Notes from the Newtown Resident’s Association Meeting, 7.30pm 21st June 2021 at Newtown Hall, 71 Daniell St. 

This meeting discussed three issues tabled by members, and then had a lengthy discussion about the recently released version of the Spatial Plan, prior to it being voted on by the Wellington City Councillors later in the week

Jan G. shared her experience as a consumer representative at the Regional Hospital.

Jill F. sought the support of the meeting to ask the council to reduce the speed limits in Newtown. The meeting supported a reduction to 40 km per hour down Constable Street, and to 30 km per hour through the Riddiford St shopping centre and on all the residential side streets.  

Steve C. updated the meeting on the situation with the Carrara Park community garden.  He now has administrator rights to the  facebook page for the community gardens , and has updated and re-invigorated this group. He also signalled that Kai Cycle will be extending their subscription waste collection service for compostable material and are arranging for a compost collection bin to be positioned in the Park. There was also discussion of community fruit trees and the maintenance of street trees.

The newly released second version of the Draft Spatial Plan was discussed at length. Anna K-W. presented the Red Design submission to the Council outlining the case for development to largely take place in the Newtown Suburban Centre, on underdeveloped comercial and industrial sites, where there is the potental to provide enough new housing to meet the projected need. We agreed that there was a need for more housing, for unfit housing to be able to be replaced by warm dry homes, and for a proportion of the housing to be designated social housing to produce genuinely affordable rents. The meeting discussed a proposal whereby the Association would support Newtown being prioritised for appropriate growth if the Red Design plan was followed, and developments in the residential streets outside the heritage precincts were a maximum 3 storeys, unless the site was particularly suitable for a higher development. The meeting agreed to support this move, and that the Residents’ Association executive could finalise the wording of the Newtown Position Statement to go to the council having heard suggestions from the floor. 

The next meeting will be on Monday the 19th of July at 7.30 p.m. 

Minutes of the Association Meeting, May 2021

Notes from the Residents’ Association Meeting 17th May 2021 

Jared Corston (WCC) gave a detailed presentation outlining the work the Council are doing to gather data on, and better understand, the demographics and characteristics of people living in Newtown and other catchment areas. This information will be used to plan for the needs of communities and had a particular focus on the role of Community Centres in delivering Council services and facilities to those most in need.

Ideas were floated about more green space utilisation and fruit tree planting. 

The meeting also noted the need to follow up with the Council area parking plan, and that the outcome of the Spatial plan consultation w is due out later in June.

 There is still some funding for neighbourly events. This will need to be returned to the council if not spent. Please can anyone /or group who has an idea for an event (and the energy to work to make it happen) contact Rhona.

Notes of the Association Meeting, April 19th 2021

A good turn out of residents were treated to three presentations of interest.

1) WCC Innovating Streets organisers reported largely positive feedback on the platform which was installed outside the Friendly Bakery and Black Coffee, and shared plans to increase such parklets in the community.

2) A team from GWRC presented the 3 main consultation themes from the draft 2021-2030  Long Term Plan:  

  • To de-carbonise public transport – busses, rail and ferries.
  • To restore areas of regional parks to native bush and wetlands as a climate change mitigation strategy
  • To provide more support (especially secretariat support) to constituent Councils to coordinate planning for Regional growth

3) WCC introduced their Long Term Plan Consultation, highlighting the extremely challenging financial environment and the huge costs due to the earthquakes and to lack of infrastructure maintenance (especially in water infrastructure) over many years.