Special group to help drive city centre master planning project

Invercargill’s city centre master planning project now has a team to promote, drive, and champion it, with the formation of a special City Centre Governance Group.

In June, urban design specialists Isthmus Group began developing a master plan for the city centre, which will give direction on what the Invercargill City Council can do to return vibrancy and connectivity to our CBD.

Recently, Council established a City Centre Governance Group to provide oversight of the wider project team working on the master plan.

Members of the governance group were selected to ensure direct links to the community, support for engagement with key stakeholders, and to provide a vehicle for businesses already based in our city centre to have an influence on the outcomes of the plan.

The group is chaired by H&J Smith Chief Executive John Green and members include ILT Chief Executive Chris Ramsey, SBS Bank Chief Executive Shaun Drylie, Iwi representative Michael Skerrett, Invercargill City Councillors Ian Pottinger and Alex Crackett, and Isthmus Principal David Irwin from Auckland.

Mr Green said the governance group was a good example of where the public and private sectors could join forces to ensure the best outcomes for the city centre’s design; supporting social and economic development through a vibrant and healthy central city.

“The governance group’s role is to provide oversight to the project working group, which is responsible for developing the master plan,” he said.

“We have already had some discussions about what a master plan truly is, and in our view it should be a robust framework to support the activities and developments taking place in the city, to ensure they are cohesive, and in recognition that each of these projects will happen in its own timeframe with its own outcomes,” Mr Green said.

“Part of our role is to make sure the scope of the master plan project includes engagement with key people and projects, as well as identifying issues to be considered during the process,” Mr Green said.

“Later this year, a formal proposal will be presented to the Invercargill City Council with the master plan produced by Isthmus. It will be the result of extensive community and stakeholder engagement by the project working group and will include ways we can create a fantastic central city where people want to meet up, shop, work, and play.”

Mr Green said the Governance Group was excited to be part of the process, and was looking forward to hearing what the project team discovers from consulting with a wide cross section of the community about their ideas and dreams for a fully functioning, impressive city centre during the next weeks and months.

For more information visit www.icc.govt.nz/citycentreplan