The Te Awa Lakes development near Horotiu is on the brink of becoming a reality.
Funded by Perry Group, the proposed 62-hectare community hub promises to provide residential, retail and tourism opportunities all in one location - from an adventure park and bike trails, to eateries, visitor accommodation and shopping.
There is no doubt in my mind that Te Awa Lakes will have a positive economic impact on Hamilton City and the greater Waikato community. And the good news is, ratepayers won’t have to foot the bill.
The recent Waikato Housing Initiative – 2018 Housing Stocktake showed that the Waikato needs 51,000 more houses in the next 25 years. We already have a shortfall of 7,500, with 4,500 of those in Hamilton alone.
Te Awa Lakes includes a housing solution of more than 1,000 homes, with 10% of these dwellings being affordable housing.
Perry Group’s five-year, billion-dollar investment will play a significant role in helping Hamilton address its housing needs, both in terms of supply and affordability.
Access to Jobs
Nearly 20 percent of Hamilton’s 87,400 jobs are located in the Te Rapa area with another 4,060 nearby in Rotokauri, Burbush, Horotiu, or Te Rapa North.
And we don’t expect employment growth in these areas to slow down any time soon.
Better access to employment will make Te Awa Lakes an attractive place to live. Jobs in Te Rapa and neighbouring areas will become a viable alternative for more people.
Te Awa Lakes will be a valuable addition to Waikato’s tourism offering.
The location of Te Awa Lakes lends itself to being a gateway to Hamilton and the North Waikato. It also creates compelling reasons for people to visit, and potentially stay the night, which will drive visitor spending.
Te Awa Lakes’ proposed Adventure Park, together with its accommodation, hospitality and retail infrastructure, goes a long way to delivering on the 2016 Hamilton & Waikato Tourism Opportunities Plan to increase the value of tourism to our region.
Food and beverage outlets and visitor accommodation at Te Awa Lakes and in neighbouring areas stand to benefit from thousands of additional visitor nights to Hamilton, which is predicted to bring greater tourism spending with retailers, restaurants, tourism operators and other businesses throughout the region.
With tourism growing and new business relocating to Hamilton, the shortage of hotel rooms and visitor accommodation is becoming increasingly evident.
Hamilton is attracting major events to the Waikato, but a lack of hotel rooms is causing the city to lose out on business conferences and big-ticket festivals.
Hamilton is fast becoming a hub for larger scale events such as the World Rugby Sevens, with more international and domestic visitors staying in Hamilton.
Te Awa Lakes could help provide a solution to this lack of large-scale, quality commercial accommodation.
As this article went to print, Hamilton City Council hearings for Proposed Plan Change 2 - Te Awa Lakes Private Plan Change were about to get underway. I have confidence in the economic benefits this project could potentially deliver to the Waikato. I invite you to join me and lend your support.
Chief Executive, Te Waka