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2008 upgrade questions and answers

Councillors and staff met with members of the community on two occasions to answer questions and address concerns. Here are some of the commonly asked questions.

Has Council already made up its mind to do the upgrade?

No. It may appear that Council has made up its mind because it has chosen a preferred option for the upgrade, but that is not the case. By law, Council must choose a preferred option before going out to consult with the public. It is a legislative requirement to hold a special consultation on whether to proceed or not with that particular option since the decision is being made outside of the Long-term Council Community Plan (LTCCP) process, which occurs every three years and will again in 2009.

Is Council proposing to upgrade Trafalgar Park just to host the Rugby World Cup in 2011?

No - the proposal looks at the future of Trafalgar Park as a Council facility intended for high-spectator sports and outdoor events. If the park is upgraded as proposed, events such as concerts, marching competitions and cultural events could be held there.

As far as sporting events, an upgraded Trafalgar Park could still host  Super 14 games, the Air NZ Cup, local rugby, rugby league, soccer and sevens games. The timing of the consultation, however, is to enable Council to retain the option of being involved with the RWC.

There is no guarantee that Nelson will get to take part in the RWC, so why upgrade without assurances?

It is felt that Trafalgar  Park is in need of an upgrade as a facility, regardless of its potential to host the RWC.

However, the timeline set out by the RWC planners has provided Council with an impetus to investigate whether or not to undertake an upgrade now.

How is the upgrade going to be paid for?

A 40-year capital loan, with annual interest and loan repayment funded from rates.

Will the cycling track be removed?

Under the proposed upgrade option, yes, the cycling track will be removed. However, it is earmarked for relocation to Saxton Field in the LTCCP in the 2014-2015 financial year. Council could also determine that this project move forward and occur sooner, and the community can discuss changing the timeline of the project next year during the 2009/19 LTCCP process.

Will the eastern grandstand be removed?

Yes - it leaves space for the use of temporary seating that would have to be brought in to meet the needs of each specific event.

What about basic infrastructure needs, such as the duplicate Maitai pipeline and the sewer pipeline? Will the Trafalgar Park upgrade affect plans for infrastructure improvements?

It might or it might not, it’s very difficult to say anything for sure. At this time, the duplicate Maitai pipeline and stage 1 of the Regional Sewage Pipeline (also known as the Waimea Estuary pipeline) are still in the current LTCCP. But the LTCCP is up for Council review and public consultation next year. Depending on Council priorities then, the LTCCP can change.

If Council decides to undertake the proposed Trafalgar Park upgrade, it could decide to make it an additional project at the proposed additional cost. On the other hand, it could decide to cut or delay another project from the LTCCP so the upgrade can progress while costs (and rates levels) are kept the same as projected.

The LTCCP and each year’s Annual Plan are in place to guide Council actions, but Councillors always have the option to change priorities for projects either as a governing body or based on public feedback and consultation.

Who can participate in the consultation?

All residents in the Nelson and Tasman regions, visitors, and of course ratepayers.

All rugby should be moved out to Saxton Field, it is a regional park and meets the needs of the entire community. Why doesn’t Council do this?

Please see the related article for a full explanation of what is available now and what is planned for the future at Saxton Field.