The Heretaunga Plains Urban Development Strategy (HPUDS) development process is underway.
Lest anyone think this group will champion anything BUT unrestrained growth, consider the membership of the Stakeholder Reference Group, which will be intimately involved in every aspect of the project:
- Sport Hawke’s Bay
- Ministry of Economic Development Representative
- Hawke’s Bay District Health Board
- Housing New Zealand
- Ministry for Social Development Representative
- Venture Hawke’s Bay
- Sustaining Hawke’s Bay Trust
- Hawke’s Bay Chamber of Commerce
- Valuers Institute of NZ
- Commercial Landusers Group
- Ngati Kahungunu Iwi Inc
- Te Puna Kokiri (Ministry of Maori Development)
- Federated Farmers
With the exception of the minimally-resourced Sustaining HB Trust, there is no clear and determined voice for protecting the environmental values embodied in the Plains. No voice from the orchardists and others who have fought to protect Plains land from development. No voice (external to Council) with expertise on the water issues that might constrain growth (of any kind) on the Plains.
But lots of voices to grow and build.
When I volunteered to participate, expressly to add some balance to this group, I was told I didn’t represent anyone. Clearly voices of caution — and potentially constraint — are unwanted.
This is exactly the kind of process that led to the “regional” sports park — talk to one and only one element of the community (in that case, sports codes), give them what they want, and call that broad consultation and “buy-in.”
Bottom line: Get ready to grow on the Plains!