Wellington Scoop

Too expensive: Waikanae stops plans for shared gallery and library

Press Release – Kapiti District Council
Plans to build a new purpose-built integrated Public Gallery and Library in Waikanae are being put on hold as the Council re-evaluates its plans.

Community Services Group Manager Max Pedersen says any discussion about building an integrated facility was reliant on the Council being able to secure a suitable site.

“Recent estimates suggest we’d need to find $12 to $15 million to build a joint facility in Waikanae, significantly more than the $9 million allocated through our long term plan. This excludes any costs associated with land purchase.

“The Council remains committed to funding its share of the Mahara Gallery upgrade but will not be progressing plans for a purpose-built integrated Public Gallery and Library in Waikanae at this time,” said Mr Pedersen.

The Council made provision to partially fund the upgrade of the Mahara Gallery in its Long term plan 2015-35 and has been working with the Mahara Gallery Trust and Field Collection Trust since 2009.

Mayor K Gurunathan says it’s disappointing that we are unable to seize the opportunity to build a shared gallery and library facility in Waikanae.

“It is important that we give the Gallery certainty around the level of Council funding available to enable them to progress their fundraising efforts to upgrade the Gallery in its existing building,” said Mayor Gurunathan.

The Council is looking at options for the Waikanae Library.

“At this point in time we are looking at how we can make better use of the space we have and what we can do to get a further five to ten years life out of the existing Library building,” said Mr Pedersen.

“This doesn’t mean a new facility won’t be built in the future but it is important that we are realistic about what the Council can afford in the next few years.”

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