Big Ideas for Economic Growth

The Council has created an agenda for economic growth that includes, but is not limited to, the following ideas.

Excerpt from Writers Walk plaque on waterfront.

We’ll investigate each of these ideas and, if the business case for them stacks up, will recommend they are funded and consulted on as part of the 2015–25 Long-term Plan.


The overall aim of the 'Big Ideas' is to realise Wellington's economic potential. That can be achieved by:

  • growing the local economy, making it more diverse, and less reliant on the government sector
  • building sectors of the economy where we have a competitive advantage eg tourism, smart economy
  • building better connections between the tertiary sector and businesses to boost the knowledge economy
  • removing barriers to growth by improving our connections to the region, to the rest of the world and by making it easier to do business in the city.
Aeroplane propellor.

Providing for large long-haul aircraft

International air connections

Wellington International Airport’s runway is too short to deal with large, long-haul aircraft. A runway up to 300m longer would:

  • allow planes to fly direct to and from Asia
  • raise the prospect of one-stop flights to and from other destinations
  • help increase visitor numbers
  • strengthen education and business connections.

News - Airport Runway Extension Proposal - 04.02.14 | Our Wellington version (632KB PDF)

Enhanced view of keyboard.

Helping high-tech companies connect

A tech precinct

A CBD tech precinct would offer opportunities to:

  • foster growth in high-tech companies
  • encourage connections between creatives, business people, investors and the education sector
  • create an environment in which small start-ups have the tools and networks to grow. 

News - Developing a Tech Precinct - 18.02.14 | Our Wellington version (602KB PDF)

Chairs, long table and microphones.

Creating a larger conference venue

Conference and concert venues

At the moment we have good convention and concert facilities - but none large enough to compete for the biggest conferences or the biggest entertainment acts. A covered concert venue would also attract headline acts and more visitors to the city.

News - New Conference and Concert Facilities - 11.03.14 | Our Wellington version (607KB PDF)

Robot clip from movie.

Building on the film industry already here

A Miramar precinct and film museum

Miramar is home to Wellington's international film industry, which employs thousands of people and contributes hugely to the region’s economy. 

The proposed runway extension and tax breaks on the filming of Avatar means there are opportunities to enhance the area, and its reputation as a centre of creative work, by supporting the development of:

  • a film precinct and associated education facilities
  • an enterprise zone

A film museum would:

  • celebrate the contribution Wellington’s film sector has made to the country’s economy and reputation
  • be a high-quality tourist attraction in the central city.
Person with open laptop.

Improving the services we provide

Open for business

Council’s services need to allow business to do what they do best - make money and create jobs so we need to:

  • make sure Council transactions are completed quickly and easily
  • make sure regulatory rules are clear and applied fairly
  • make information readily available
  • eliminate red tape and costs
  • encourage a positive, ‘can do’ culture
  • improve the services we provide
  • be innovative.

News - Supporting Business Growth - 11.02.14 | Our Wellington version (576KB PDF)

Cyclist in cycle lane.

Making it safer and easier to bike

Better transport

Getting about the city and region can be made quicker and safer by:

  • developing cycleways between the suburbs and the central business district
  • completing highway upgrades in a manner that has minimal impact on surrounding neighbourhoods
  • improving the reliability and efficiency of public transport.

News - Better Land Transport - 25.02.14 | Our Wellington version (626KB PDF)


Enhancing our environment

A liveable city

When it comes to quality of life, the Capital City consistently ranks among the world’s top 20 cities. Keeping this ranking will be important as we compete to attract people and resources. We need to:

  • be socially inclusive
  • be open to differences and new ideas
  • reduce harmful emissions as we continue to protect and enhance the environment and our biodiversity.

News - Growing Our Liveable City - 04.03.14 | Our Wellington version (629KB PDF)