Marae extension right on track

Discussing the $3 million marae extension project are (from left) Otakou runanga kaumatua Edward Ellison, Arrow International Ltd construction manager Anthony Scarfe and runanga manager Rachel Wesley. Photo by Linda Robertson.
Discussing the $3 million marae extension project are (from left) Otakou runanga kaumatua Edward Ellison, Arrow International Ltd construction manager Anthony Scarfe and runanga manager Rachel Wesley. Photo by Linda Robertson.

A Multimillion-Dollar extension to the Otakou marae is expected to be delivered on time and on budget.

The plan to add a large wharekai (dining hall) to Tamatea marae was first mooted about a decade ago, building trustee chairman Edward Ellison told the Otago Daily Times yesterday.

Work on the $3 million project began in January and was expected to be completed by March, just in time for a wedding that has already been booked for the facility.

The roomy multilevelled building would be fitted with large-capacity kitchen facilities, well able to cater for 200 people in the dining room, while 50 people would be able to sleep in the basement area.

Mr Ellison said a small loan from Te Runanga o Ngai Tahu helped with the project, which was well supported by runanga members and funding agencies.

In addition to being a focal point for members, the marae also catered for many government agencies, tertiary institutions and school groups.

Mr Ellison said the new facilities would better serve the community, while the design would complement the existing marae.

hamish.mcneilly@odt.co.nz

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