Cull’s council takes business away from retailers

Mayor refuses to recognise chaos created by buses and council-imposed parking changes in the CBD.

Dunedin City Council moves to activate commercial activity in the city’s warehouse district south of the Queens Gardens pose risks for existing business, gallery owner says.

### DScene 31 Oct 2012
Businesses slam council focus (page 5)
By Wilma McCorkindale
David McLean was adding his voice to jeweller Brent Weatherall’s recent criticism of the council’s support of business in the city. Weatherall said the Dunedin City Council (DCC) was dictatorial rather than consultative on some aspects of its economic development strategy, in the wake of a battle over the proposed council banning of footpath signs. Otago Chamber of Commerce retail committee members believed consultation was largely ignored, Weatherall said.

The council needed to focus on parking concerns and attracting businesses into empty main street shops.

Constant requests for a CBD shuttle appeared to have been ignored, even though [McLean] mooted it several times. He believed a free or cheap shuttle would help circulate shoppers throughout the city business district. The Otago Regional Council, which administers public transport in the city, did not have a responsibility for keeping activity going in the CBD, he said. “And yet buses are an issue for that.”

Transport issues in the city held the town to ransom, especially struggling businesses south of the Octagon, some of which had already been forced to shut. “Now we’ve got a focus on the new warehouse district. They’re going to end up with a city ghost town.”

Concerns over loss of main street parking, replaced in some cases by bus stops – with buses sitting on them pumping out dirty diesel – remained a problem. [McLean] had repeatedly asked for free 30-minute parks to be reinstated in the main street to encourage people into the Princes St side of the Octagon. However, the loss of parks continued to be an issue in the wake of council’s botched 2009 parking restructure, he said.

“Council is very aware of the strength of the main street – of the main shopping street,” Cull said. “We wouldn’t do anything to compromise that.”

Dunedin Mayor Dave Cull said the council consulted widely with the business community as well as those in the wider community, and that such decisions did not always please everyone. Some may have misunderstood the focus of the proposed warehousing precinct, which was intended to have a creative and residential focus. Cull understood parking issues had been sorted.

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Related Post:
17.10.12 “But there’s more to Dunedin than just bloody cruise ships”

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr


Filed under Architecture, Business, DCC, Design, Economics, Geography, Heritage, Media, Name, People, Politics, Project management, Property, Town planning, Urban design

24 responses to “Cull’s council takes business away from retailers

  1. Hype O'Thermia

    And now they want to eliminate the efficient hassle-free one-way streets so the Warehouse area from Queens Gardens south can become a lively pedestrian, cafe, retail —DANGER! VISION ALERT— precinct. Big-box, plentiful parking retail has already taken people away from the CBD, let’s dilute the centre city buzz even further. Nice one, planners.

  2. Elizabeth

    There has been (DCC) Wall Street’s historical effect on George Street retailing….

    Many landlords are not maintaining or upgrading their shops and continue to charge “sky-high” rents.

    ### ODT Online Sat, 12 Sep 2015
    Rent drives retailers away from George St
    By Shawn McAvinue
    High rents are driving retailers from Dunedin’s George St, a retail trade association says. Retail NZ public affairs general manager Greg Harford said retailers were being “driven out” of George St.
    Read more


    Yesterday, DCC Finance Committee yesterday heard the council’s operating deficit was $1.5 million to $5.9 million worse than budget.

    ### ODT Online Tue, 8 Sep 2015
    Council may sell Wall St mall
    By David Loughrey
    The Dunedin City Council’s Wall Street mall could soon be on the market as the city gears up to consider asset sales. Discussion of the mall’s future ownership came yesterday, despite a new valuation that saw it drop $5.8 million in value.
    Read more

    Report – FIN – 07/09/2015 (PDF, 1.1 MB)
    Financial Result – Year Ended 30 June 2015

  3. Elizabeth

    ODT 15.10.15 (page 14)

    ODT 15.10.15 Cr Hilary Calvert p14

  4. Hype O'Thermia

    Did Hilary get the figures wrong, or did Grant McKenzie do a spot of shell-game shuffling of numbers that makes it look that way?
    If I were heading off to the TAB as soon as I finish this comment, as one who studies form I’d be placing my bet on Hilary Calvert. But I’m not a gambler, I’m a voter hanging out for the next local body elections.

  5. Lyndon Weggery

    Given the exponential growth in online shopping and the number of vacant shops in George St I have always wondered why on earth any local body would want to invest and own a retail shopping mall. Hilary is so right to question this Wall St Mall on behalf of ratepayers.

  6. Gurglars

    If the council sells and this loss of supposed value impacts upon the total indebtedness of the council will it be publicised? Orwell it be covered up (pun intended).

    Because there is every chance that the purchaser will be smarter than DCC Property and will pay much less than valuation, thus increasing the loss.

    Will the idiot who purchased/ financed the purchase/ development be named and shamed?

    No he’ll either be dead or “moved on”, there is no such accountability at fortress DCC.

  7. Elizabeth

    ### ODT Online Mon, 28 Dec 2015
    DCC staff member quits as CV queried
    By Chris Morris
    A Dunedin City Council staff member has resigned part-way through an investigation into ‘‘irregularities” in his CV, it has been confirmed. The departure of the staff member, who worked in the council’s city property unit, has left behind a trail of upset business owners inside the council’s Wall Street shopping mall.
    Read more

    Note ODT has turned off comments to this article; I advise care with comments at this website. No doubt people will have problems with the “No.” published.

    Related Post and Comments:
    23.2.15 Wall Street Mall drops glazing panel to George Street

  8. Phil

    What is no secret is the name of the recently departed senior manager in City Property who hired the said person, and was responsible for their daily duties.

    • Elizabeth

      Yes. This website as of 23 December is under instructions to not comment on staff by name. So if you love their work then forget dishing out the praise too. How society unwinds.

      • Peter

        It is good that the council has picked up on these CV irregularities and done something about it.
        People do lie or embellish their CVs. That’s life. Catching them out takes time.
        Checking references is fraught as we know.
        I do feel sorry for good people hounded out by rank bosses.
        The answer? Is there one?

        • Elizabeth

          The HR practice nowadays is to provide phone referees, not written references which can be doctored or economical with the truth. Still, if QEII writes you a reference who are you to sniff.

      • Hype O'Thermia

        If praise and criticism are forbidden how can comment be made on decisions and performance without the wrong person being praised when they are useless, and praiseworthy people doing their best in an often dysfunctional system getting no recognition for their excellence in the face of organisational dry rot?

        • Elizabeth

          Yes. We will need to tease these things out slowly according to site owner privilege and interpretation of limits. Just because we pay their salary does not mean we have a right to examine – it seems. Their employer is the CE, the conversation needs to happen at that level. They are not unaccountable, in the same way an unexceptional cop is not accountable. Woops, there’s a quandary.

    • Hype O'Thermia

      Good heavens, if this Kremlin “information regulating” system continues there will have to be a kind of e-samizdat –
      Samizdat was a key form of dissident activity across the Soviet bloc in which individuals reproduced censored publications by hand and
      passed the documents … )
      – cryptic-crossword lingo with disambiguation available on a separate site under totally separate management!

  9. Phil

    Lucky escape there. I was about to praise the work of a department head who recently had to escort a senior manager from another department, out of the building. Good job that I didn’t.

  10. Anonymous

    “Guide Me Oh Thou Great Jehovah”, as the Welsh hymn goes.

  11. Elizabeth

    [in Welsh: ‘Arglwydd, arwain trwy’r anialwch’]

  12. Elizabeth

    Received from Douglas Field
    Tue, 29 Dec 2015 at 1:48 p.m.

    walls-now-cull-corridor-new-29-12-15 (1)[click to enlarge]

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