Personal reflections on urbanism, urban life and sustainable urban design in Wellington, New Zealand.

Monday, July 03, 2006

Healthy wards

Happily, the council seems to have selected the most sensible of the proposed ward structures, by keeping 5 wards with just minor adjustments for population shifts. As I wrote earlier, some of the options (such as a 3-ward system) would have lumped together places with far too little in common to be considered "communities of interest". If anything, I think the Lambton ward could have been refined even further to allow for continuing population increases there. The calculations were based on population estimates from June last year, and given that the inner city population has increased at a rate of 40% over the past five years, and that many more apartments are close to completion, by the time we get to next year's elections the inner city could be under-represented again.

The other changes seem reasonable, too. The Makara/Ohariu Community Board gets extended to include other (quasi-)rural areas to become the Wellington Rural Community Board. The abolition of the Tawa Community Board might be more controversial, but then again, why does Tawa have one when (say) Kilbirnie, Berhampore or Brooklyn don't? Public consultation on the changes starts next Monday and goes through until the 28th of August.


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