In 2018 Masterton District Council committed to investing $3.63 million to inject more life and vibrancy into our town centre.
Our plans are underpinned by the Town Centre Strategy – this sets the results we want to see from investment in the town centre.
The developments we have planned for Masterton will change our town in a way that hasn’t been seen since the 1950s. We need to make sure the revamp will deliver what future generations expect.
Over ten years, we are planning to complete key parts of our vision to make Masterton a modern town. That includes revamping all three sections of Queen Street and Charlie’s Lane as well as bringing the ‘park’ (more green space) into Park and Bruce Streets and developing the Waipoua River precinct to create an exciting and lively hub for our community.
We plan to improve the entrances to Masterton too. These create a first impression for our visitors and greet our whanau when they return home. We want our ‘welcome’ to be inviting, and to reflect us by promoting what we love about our town.
This project was consulted on in our 2021-31 Long-Term Plan consultation and it was decided that the project would be deferred for three years.
Town Centre Strategy
The Masterton Town Centre Strategy was adopted by Council in August 2018. This followed extensive community engagement through 2015-17, and formal consultation as part of the 2018-28 Long-Term Plan (LTP) consultation process.
We want to bring residents and those that are visiting, into the Town Centre and create spaces that facilitate community connection.
A vibrant and interesting Town Centre that attracts people helps build:
- Community connection and satisfaction
- Tourism appeal
- Foot traffic through town
- Retail spending in our Town Centre businesses
- Investor’s confidence around investing in our Town Centre.
The work on Masterton’s entrances came later in 2019 after a survey with the community. The results of the survey showed the need for council to invest in the Town’s welcome points and the objectives of the work reflect many of the Town Centre objectives:
- Showcase the three river crossings and Masterton’s connection to the water
- Define the town thresholds and emphasise them
- Be mindful of creating a safer environment for pedestrians and cyclists
- Make town entrance routes greener
- Reflect Masterton’s identity and enhance buildings of cultural or municipal importance
Frequently Asked Questions
What happened to the town centre rejuvenation?
You might have noticed that we’ve changed the name of this project from “Town Centre rejuvenation” to the Masterton Revamp. We’re now looking wider than just the work in the Town Centre and thinking about how we welcome people into the district, whether it be visitors to the district or whanau returning home.
All the work that has been done to date on the Town Centre, including the Town Centre strategy, has provided some strong foundations for the project so we’re definitely not starting from scratch!
What is the Masterton Revamp project all about?
We want people to be attracted to our town – both Masterton residents and those that are visiting – and to create spaces that facilitate community connection. We plan to deliver improvements to our town centre and entrances into Masterton over a 10 year period and there are four over-arching things we want to focus on delivering:
- Increase connection with the Waipoua River – Masterton is the only Wairarapa town set on a river. Let’s make the most of it!
- Joining things up – we need to create linkages throughout the town between key features.
- Focusing investment – helping to create a “heart” for the town centre and avoid it spreading out
- Greening things up – bringing in more natural landscapes and plantings.
The key projects that we’re going to focus on:
- Waipoua River precinct – recognising and celebrating the Waipoua landscape and how people interact with the river
- Queen Street – consolidating the main shopping/café area
- Park Street – creating an active east-west connection between Queen Elizabeth Park and the town centre
- Bruce Street – create a strong art connection between Queen Elizabeth Park that supports diverse use of the street
- Dixon Street – link the park to the town centre and make the street more user-friendly
- Charlies Lane – adding vibrancy to the laneway in conjunction with Masterton Trust Lands Trust
- Northern entrance – improvements and landscaping from the Ascension statue north to the town boundary
- Southern entrance – a multi-staged project that includes upgrades from the Waingawa river through to Kuripuni
- Coastal connection – enable better east-west flow of pedestrians, cyclists and traffic from adjoining neighbourhoods
- Railway link: shared cycle path – provide an east-west active movement corridor from the railway station through the town centre, connecting the eastern and western suburbs
- Placemaking – create an identity for the town centre that reflects the community of Masterton and its culture and heritage
Why is this being done?
Masterton’s town centre needs a rethink – we’ve been aware of this for a while and have been speaking with our community about possibilities. This started with community engagement led by Massey University Toi Aria and assisted by Letting Space in 2016.
There were some key themes that came out of this engagement that have been taken into account. For example, people wanted connectivity and a revitalisation of parks and public spaces. We also know that the entry points into Masterton are tired and don’t necessarily reflect who we are. In our 2019 survey 8-in-10 residents agreed Council needs to do something about the entrances into Masterton.
When will the rejuvenation be done?
The work was set out in our 2021-2031 LTP. It is expected that it will take 10 years to complete and the start date has been deferred for three years to 2024.