“This building should not be there at all”

kumutoto - aug 2014
Willis Bond

by Mary Munro
Waterfront Watch notes with interest the re-designed building planned for Site 10 on North Kumutoto. The main concern of Waterfront Watch, and most of those who submitted to the city council in opposition, is that this building should not be there at all.

The re-design is the result of issues raised by the public earlier this year.

This site is public land, and the waterfront is the jewel in the city’s crown. Waterfront Watch policy states that “the Wellington waterfront should be a place of public open space for people and their children, now and in the future.”

That the Council is moving towards privatizing public space by effectively selling off the site to a private developer is disgraceful.

That the council would contemplate building an office block on such an iconic site reflects a surprisingly poor understanding of Wellingtonians’ values.

Waterfront Watch remains resolutely opposed to private developments on this site, and it will always work constructively to ensure that the waterfront remains as far as possible “a natural environment where everyone can gain refreshment and relief from traffic, pollution and the noise of streets and buildings.”

Mary Munro is president of Waterfront Watch Inc.



  1. Trish, 19. August 2014, 14:58

    Well said, Waterfront Watch. Keep up the good work. Wellingtonians love the waterfront as it is with its promenade, hard surfaces and grass open to the sky. The Council thinks that is an endorsement of their great work but mostly it is due to Waterfront Watch articulating the public’s voice. Without people like you we would have townhouses covering Waitangi Park, no lagoon, a casino, the Hilton Hotel and three more office blocks. The Council contribution is the tin shed events centre and Shell office building, and the sails sunshades.

    I see that your bank account for direct deposit donations is on the newsletters downloadable from your website

  2. Pauline, 19. August 2014, 17:55

    Thanks Trish, and let us not forget the first win in the Environment Court to save the Free Ambulance building being moved and replaced by a high rise car park!

    Two of my favourite quotes from the Framework 2001 are under Principles and are “Public Space development does not depend for funding on commercial development” and “The waterfront as a whole is, and will remain, a unique asset to the city that is a draw card in its own right”. And from the Environment Court decision on Variation 11: “There is a clear understanding that this area provides the main open space for the central city and is primarily a place for people”.

  3. City Lad, 19. August 2014, 22:43

    Any bars, restaurant and cafés on North Kumutoto will bankrupt Queens Wharf businesses. The majority of space in this latest foolish council driven concept is mainly for office space. Inner-city commercial building owners are angry.

    Please continue the splendid work, Waterfront Watch. The city needs you more than ever.

  4. Ellie, 20. August 2014, 16:33

    What is it that the Council can’t understand a NO.
    Are they going to waste our ratepayers’ money twice (in our pockets and collected as rates) and litigate this unpopular scheme again.
    The building is a glass box on a glass box, out of – and in the wrong place.
    It is embarrassing to see our Councillors sucked into this again and again. Wellingtonians want their waterfront, not continuous concrete city to sea.


Write a comment: