MCM representatives met with the Hon Chris Finlayson, Minister for Arts, Culture and Heritage about the War Memorial Park project on 15 April. We discussed MCM’s concerns and listened to the Minister’s views.
- The Minister is keen for the community and the Mt Cook School to be involved in the planning for the park
- He is also very comfortable with the notion of having some community facilities incorporated in the park’s overall design e.g. seating and a playground for children.
- He considers that there should be no shifting of the bypass roadway closer to the Mt Cook School. The Minister feels that the noise level of a roadway right next to school buildings will be disruptive
- The Minister is proposing to create a new advisory group to reconsider all of the plans for the park and to advise the Minister on a way forward. This will involve a review of all previous work. There will likely be a representative from Mt Cook Mobilised on this group. The Minister has written to the Prime Minister seeking his approval for the advisory group to be established.
- There will in any case be a delay while the Basin Reserve flyover is being considered as that will have an impact on the proposed park. In the interim until plans for the Park are finalised, the Ministry of Culture and Heritage is making plans for an upgrade and landscaping of the area of demolished buildings opposite the War Memorial site. Plans for this were viewed and discussed at the MCM meeting on Sunday 10 May.
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