Electioneering in the ghetto

Signs are springing up in the most unlikely places.

Take this one on Saturday morning, 11 September, in the front yard of the historic turret house at 4 Pitt Street, Dunedin North.

According to Dunedin City Council the ratepayer is Pamela Marguerite McKellar, of Syke House Farm Holmfirth West Yorkshire, England. Not sure who manages the property in the owner’s absence.

Not long ago, a New Zealand Historic Places Trust (NZHPT) registration plaque was afixed to the gatepost at the entry to the property.

Dunedin City District Plan
25.1 Townscape and Heritage Buildings and Structures

Site Number: B427
Map: 35
Item: House
Address: 4 Pitt Street
Legal Description: Sec 75 Blk XXIV Town of Dunedin
NZHPT Registration Number: 5233
NZHPT Category: II
Protection Required & Comments: facades and bulk appearance to Pitt and George Streets, excluding the garage in front.

Dunedin City District Plan – Chapter 13 Townscape
13.6 Heritage Precincts
13.6.2 Royal Terrace/Pitt Street/Heriot Row Heritage Precinct (Precinct Description, pages 13:31 – 13:32)


Cr Dave Cull chairs the DCC’s heritage buildings economic re-use steering committee. A fusty committee name at best but the committee is doing great work.


Temporary though it is, a pity to see a hoarding in the heritage precinct.
Not a vote catcher. This could have been an essay in praise of natural backlighting.

[A further pity to see the new (permanent) buildings at 11 Pitt Street arrive by stealth (non notified application in the heritage precinct; no neighbouring long-term tenants consulted as affected parties by the developers) – who on earth would care about heritage values and amenity in a district plan protected heritage precinct… or privacy, density, car parking, noise, rubbish, shading, incomplete landscaping, a broken and subverted boundary fence, or… After all, what are “neighbours” to the Auckland property developers and their builder son wanting to cream it here on the back of affluent Chinese students. The “iceberg” isn’t pretty enough to photograph – but it’s right here too, in the heritage precinct. One more thing. Mayor Chin is the ratepayer for the Auckland developer couple’s current abode; and it was Mayor Chin that influenced the rushed consent without consultation of the affected parties. A much longer story not able to be published here.]


Election signage
The District Plan describes the rules around signs on public or private property. If your sign does not comply with the restrictions, you will need to apply for resource consent.

Election Signage Policy 2010 (PDF, 1.4mb, open in new window)

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr

Note: I haven’t decided who to vote for in the local body elections. Preferences will centre on a balance of issues as well as the best determination it’s possible to make on candidate leadership, experience, financial prowess and direction. Hard, isn’t it.


Filed under Heritage, People, Politics, Site

9 responses to “Electioneering in the ghetto

  1. Elizabeth

    Meanwhile, in other parts of town…

    ### ODT Online Tue, 14 Sep 2010
    Swings hoping to sway voters
    By Chris Morris
    Giant swings promoting Dunedin mayoral candidate Lee Vandervis might tower over their rivals, but they do not break election campaign rules, Dunedin City Council staff say. The swings appeared around Dunedin during the weekend, with three of the large steel structures installed at Maia, Mosgiel and Caversham, and five smaller sets elsewhere around the city.
    Read more

  2. This story is in the ODT today:
    The Get The Train organisation is using train trips to promote the policy of commuter trains, in the upcoming local body elections. But these train trips are being funded by the Dunedin City Council.
    I believe that it is totally unacceptable for the City Council to be funding the promotion of policies in the election campaign.

    • Elizabeth

      Alistair – what else do we know about the Get The Train group? I don’t understand, they booked the train yet you say DCC is funding it?

      Each year – for two years at least – DCC has funded a take-the-train day… an encouragement to leave the car at home. Is this ‘train day’ the same thing?
      Tell us more.

  3. Get The Train have this website:
    They seem to have been given the money and taken over organising the Train event.
    Trains are an efficient means of transporting commuters when there are large numbers of people wanting to travel over the same route at the same time. It is ludicrous to suggest that there is any business case for a commuter train from Waitati.

    • Elizabeth

      Thanks. At ODT Online it says:

      “Get The Train wanted to promote rail as an option for Otago transport, and believed oil prices would make a daily train service between the city and Waitati viable within one or two decades.”

      Sorry, GTT – given the cost of ‘hiring’ the lines, not just the fuel and rolling stock maintenance etc, this is hogwash – do you have a crystal ball.

      If however GTT was to actively promote greater use of rail freight and coastal trading vessels…according to its own advocacy and fundraising efforts…it might be useful for the region to add a passenger car to the freight train…

      • Elizabeth

        This helps clarify the cost and how it was met…

        ### ODT Online Thu, 23 Sep 2010
        Commuters swap cars for train
        By Nigel Benson
        It was a case of back to the future for a group of commuters participating in Car Free Day yesterday. City workers and children from the northern coast clambered aboard a train to get to Dunedin, where work or school awaited.

        The $4000 Waitati-Dunedin charter was organised by rail advocate group Get the Train. The each-way fare cost $5, which was subsidised by local community board and charitable trust grants.

        Read more

  4. Peter

    Not sure whether this fits here, but I was most impressed by Aaron Hawkins, mayoral and council candidate, on the Channel 9 Local Body Elections tonight. This young guy speaks well and is direct. So refreshing. His comments on the Old Boy Network, and those who’d been on council too long, were apt and he wasn’t about to be put off by the blusterings of Michael Guest who was not so subtle in his comments to shut him down. I’d kind of dismissed Aaron because of his age – how ageist is that of me – but he deserves attention and, I believe, a high placed vote.

    • Elizabeth

      ### ODT Online 2010 Wed, 15 Sep 2010
      DCC: Status quo versus change
      By David Loughrey
      The 2010 Dunedin mayoral campaign is shaping up as a mighty struggle between the status quo and the challengers. The position of the city is reasonably clear. Hundreds of millions of dollars have been spent on water, wastewater, building projects and stadiums, despite a clamour of complaint, and budgets will be tight for the next eight or nine years. Incoming councillors will have to grapple with financial statements with little headroom for projects they may want to push.
      Read more + Graphic


      ### ODT Online Wed, 15 Sep 2010
      DCC: Mayoral candidates
      What do the candidates in the 2010 local body election stand for? The Otago Daily Times has given all nominees for the councils across Otago the opportunity to answer the following two questions.
      1: Voters are concerned about the level of council spending. How will you keep rates down while retaining essential services?
      2: What are your goals and what should the priorities be for your council?
      The voting period for the 2010 local body elections is from September 17 to October 9.
      Candidate statements


      ### ODT Online Wed, 15 Sep 2010
      DCC: Voters will decide how 37 goes into 11
      By David Loughrey
      Dunedin City Council candidates, in the newly created central ward, at least, will face a serious struggle to get their voices heard above the din of the 37 others vying for 11 seats. And voters face their own challenge: to take the time to do some research, discover who is running, and who they think will best represent the city in the future.
      In March, Dunedin’s voting system was given a comprehensive overhaul. The Local Government Commission ruled the city council’s system of six wards should be scrapped in favour of one large urban ward and two rural wards.
      Read more

  5. Peter

    In this week’s D Scene, page 17, there is an advertorial by Peter Chin. Makes interesting reading when you put the two excerpts together.

    1. ‘I expect our new Council to bring ideas to the table that will support the development of this facility (stadium) as a hub for Dunedin events and maximise all opportunities associated with our INVESTMENT.’
    2. ‘I am delighted to see new faces putting themselves forward alongside those who have previously served – a new combination of vision and experience can only be a positive thing for our city. It is my hope to be the even keel that steers a council ready to embrace thoughtful NEW VISIONS in a culture of respect and optimism.’

    My take is he is coalition building for new spend ups on the stadium, to pay for Malcolm’s ’embellishments’ for the stadium ‘investment’. (Where are the returns?) I thought they had all the bright ideas and expectations for the stadium sorted, under a GMP, didn’t you? Hang on to your wallets – if you can.

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