MainPower Stadium ... A highlight of this financial year will be the opening of the stadium in August, says Mayor Dan Gordon. Image: File.

A purpose-built Pegasus community centre is one step closer.

The Waimakariri District Council endorsed its Long Term Plan (LTP) at a council meeting on Tuesday, June 22, which proposes three community projects over the next 10 years beginning with a new Pegasus Community Centre.

Mayor Dan Gordon says the future-focused LTP responds to a growing population while caring for the environment and keeping rate increases low.

The LTP focuses on providing infrastructure and facilities for a growing community (likely to be around 95,000 by 2050), supporting Covid-19 economic recovery, responding to climate change and considering the impact of the Governments Three Waters Infrastructure Review.

“Waimakariri fared much better than other parts of New Zealand following the lock downs of last year, but there’s still a long way to go in recovery, and the council has a role to play here,” Mr Gordon says.

“We’re a high growth district and need to make sure we cater for and appeal to new residents by being an attractive place to work and live. We do this by ensuring we invest in and provide the right services and facilities to meet diverse needs while looking after existing communities and our environment.”

Councillors received and deliberated on 161 formal submissions before making amendments to the plan which sees rates increase for the first year at an average of 4.3 percent.

Priorities for the coming year include recovering from the recent flood event, developing strategies to respond to climate change and sustainability in accord with the Government’s focus on lowering emissions and purchasing land for the proposed Pegasus and north Woodend (Ravenswood) community facilities.

A highlight will be the opening of the new MainPower Stadium in August, Mr Gordon says.

“While there is some uncertainty about the operating environment of councils due to three water and RMA (Resource Management Act) reforms, the council is committed to investing in our community and ensuring Waimakariri continues to be a fantastic place to work and live.

“I believe this plan is evidence of this commitment and the decisions made will leave a positive print on the future of our district.”

The council is planning to build a new community centre in Pegasus in 2024.

Other projects in the pipeline include the upgrade of the Trevor Inch Memorial Library and the Rangiora Civic Building, a community facility at Ravenswood and the purchase of land to build a parking building in Rangiora’s town centre, which will reconsidered in the next TP in 2024.