There may not be any more mystery bars to look forward to (at least, not on WellUrban...), but at least the series ended on a pleasant note. It was indeed the brand new Mojo at Kumutoto, and it's already doing wonders for the liveliness of the adjacent public spaces.
It's one of those incredibly versatile little café/bars that Wellington does so well, and if you're not in that part of town when you're after a coffee, try popping in after work for a beer or some pizza: there's a surprising amount of sun there in the early evening.
While WellUrban will no longer be around, there are some other sources of information and gossip that are worth checking out. I can't go without a plug for The Wellingtonista, and you might see a bit more in the way of bar reviews and so forth in the near future, as well as all the usual provocations and random snippets of vital information. Texture is still going strong for hipsters and barflies, while The Kitchen Sink and The Bandwagon are the brand new gig-guides on the block. For architecture and development, the SkyscraperCity Wellington forums are full of good information, and it's worth keeping an eye on the WCC resource consents page to see listings of consents recently applied for or granted (it's on my wish-list to get that published as a geocoded feed rather than PDFs).
This could be a turbulent year for Wellington urban development and hospitality, with economic uncertainty and an election year looming. Despite some closures late in the year (goodbye, Tupelo, Imbibe and Pod), 2007 still saw a net gain of 8 bars, cafés and restaurants, and there are plenty more on the horizon. Chews Lane is nearly ready to open with plenty of tenants lining up, ranging from a rather naff-looking chain (The Coffee Club) and some more welcome new branches of local businesses (Emporio, Midland Sushi, perhaps Simply Paris) and some brand-new places (Gotham, Fresh Take and the Colonial Carrying Company). The Chaffers Dock complex has been looking a bit shaky, but with any luck someone with some business nous will take over the old Herd St Brasserie site and help the area thrive through into winter. The immediate success of the latest Mojo augurs much more favourably for the future of Kumutoto, though there's no timeline for when Wagamama and Eon will open.
Speaking of Kumutoto, the winners of the sites 8-10 competition should be announced next month. While rumour has it that the judges might tend towards the unadventurous, even the least exciting of the entries was still far above the standard of architecture that we've got used to elsewhere in the city, so the announcement will be worth your attention. And don't forget the Ngauranga to Airport transport study, consultation on which closes in four weeks' time. It's a document that deserves more analysis and argument than I've been able to devote to it, and in particular, the underlying transport model and its ludicrous assumptions are due for a damned good fisking.
It sounds very much as if something like WellUrban is still needed, and who knows? Something might be on the horizon: keep your eye out for something fishy.