Plans by September

Omarama is just up the road from Sailors Cutting.
Omarama.
Draft master plans for Omarama and Otematata are expected to be approved before the coming local body elections.

The Ahuriri Community Board was scheduled to approve master plans for the two Waitaki Valley townships by September, Waitaki Mayor Gary Kircher said.

However, due to the timing of the coming elections, the Waitaki District Council would not ratify the decision until after the new council was sworn in.

Mr Kircher said the Ahuriri board would soon review options for consulting the community and it was expected workshops would be held with the community board and key stakeholders for both townships in June and July.

Unlike the Oamaru Harbour master plan process, which had its budget quadrupled from $50,000 to $200,000 in February, the master plan process for the two communities increasingly experiencing growth pressures should be more straightforward, he said.

"Quite a bit of work" had already been done to determine concerns and possible solutions for each community and the plans to manage development in the areas were expected to be "a little more open".

"It's trying to get a plan that helps to take the town into the future without actually knowing what that future is, because of the nature of things changing over time," Mr Kircher said.

"But we want them to continue to be great communities for the residents - that's really important ... it's got to work for the locals.

"If you look at all of them, there's going to be some things where you're going to have some conflict between locals and visitors, between recreational and business, and so forth, but I think those in Omarama and Otematata are relatively straightforward and relatively simple because there's not as many stakeholders and I don't think the spectrum is going to be as broad."

The council is expected to endorse an Oamaru Harbour master plan on June 25.

Each Waitaki Valley community master plan was allocated $20,000 by the council in its long-term plan.

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