Fees Agreement to Boost City's Growth

15 October 2013

Wellington City Council and Massey University have signed an agreement on development contribution fees that will support the university’s plans to redevelop its Wellington campus and boost the city’s economy.

Massey University’s upgrade plans will attract more students to the city

Resize

Development contribution fees are charged by the Council if a development generates the need for city infrastructure, such as for water supply and waste water. The fees cover the costs in providing this infrastructure.

The new agreement with Massey means its development contributions for the next 10 years will be based on actual numbers of staff and students at the Wellington campus rather than an assumed growth in numbers. Massey will still be required to pay 100 percent of growth-related costs created by development on the campus.

Massey University Assistant Vice-Chancellor Operations and University Registrar Stuart Morriss says the agreement is the first of its kind between a local body and an educational institution in New Zealand.

He says the agreement is a welcome demonstration of the Council’s support for the university.

“It enables us to move forward with plans to further upgrade our campus, expand our presence in Wellington and attract more students to the city from around New Zealand and internationally.”

The Council’s Policy Manager, Andrew Stitt, says universities play a critical role in the city and help to achieve the Council’s vision for a smarter and stronger economy, so supporting them to grow is very important.

“To attract smart people from around New Zealand and around the world to work and study in Wellington, it is essential that our universities provide world-class, modern and inviting facilities. Massey has plans to significantly upgrade its campus and we want to make that as straightforward as possible.”

Massey is an important employer and economic, social and cultural contributor to Wellington. It contributes approximately $250 million a year to the Wellington region’s economy.

“This agreement signals a new and better way of working more collaboratively and openly with developers. We want to reduce bureaucracy and work with organisations that contribute to economic growth,” Andrew says.

“It represents a long-term strategic approach that will provide a basis for further cooperation between the Council and Massey.”

The agreement came about earlier this year after discussions on the development contributions Massey would have to pay for its new award-winning College of Creative Arts building, Te Ara Hihiko.

“As well as the economic opportunities to come from Massey’s upgrade plans, we’d also like to encourage more designs like Te Ara Hihiko, as an example of a quake-resilient, environmentally-friendly building that will help to reduce the city’s energy use,” says Andrew.