PAULA'S BLOG

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Let's not just build a bigger city, let's build a better city

While affordable housing, timely infrastructure and a strong economy are vital for our city growth, let's not forget that it is our strong and vibrant communities that make Hamilton a great place to live. Over my many years in Hamilton I have seen how people value our green spaces and meeting places. Community hubs are where people can connect with each other to enjoy sport, art, culture or a conversation with a neighbour.

Not all projects need to be large or expensive. Sometimes it's the small things that matter to a community and touch their lives in a meaningful way. These projects could be as simple as making sure the pavement is level so the elderly don't trip and finally fixing that pothole down your street, or a little more ambitious like providing new artificial sports turfs in the North East, an extended carpark for the dog lovers at Days Park and a safe right turn for the residents of Huntington. We need to be engaging with communities, including them early in the planning process and delivering positive outcomes for the people who elect us.

I am a strong advocate for the Hamilton River Plan and the restoration of gullies and special natural places including Lake Waiwhakareke. I also support the development of a future proof, high quality theatre and am particularly keen to find ways this can be delivered in partnership to minimize to cost to ratepayers. Council needs to work collaboratively with local communities to deliver services and amenities that meet the needs of our residents. We should all have a say in the future of our city.

In Short, we need to:
  1. Seek funding partnerships that allow us to fast-track priority actions in the Hamilton River Plan;
  2. Work collaboratively with Creative Waikato, Sports Waikato, funders and developers to find smart way to fund affordable, quality facilities that enhance our quality of life;
  3. Deliver on existing local community plans;
  4. Actively engage with, and listen to, our community to deliver positive outcomes that are driven from the ground up;
  5. Continue to partner with the community and support volunteers to improve our amenities and green spaces.