Te Newhanga Community Centre users and Kāpiti Coast District councillors heard today that Council is working on developing options to address recommended remedial work for the Centre’s Paraparaumu building over the next 12 months. This is part of continued preparations and work with the community to eventually shift Centre services back to a community-based provider.
Council took over day-to-day operations on an interim basis in 2018 to get the Centre on a sustainable footing before awarding its annual contract to a new service operator for the Kāpiti community.
“As part of our work to better understand this asset prior to handover, testing has highlighted weather-tightness issues,” Group Manager Place and Space James Jefferson said.
The latest test report has shown evidence of moulds contained in the building’s walls including low levels of stachybotris spores which can affect people with low immunity or who are unwell.
However, unlike the Waikanae Library which necessitated immediate closure, air quality testing showed stachybotris was not present in the air at the Centre.
Centre users can keep using the site for their programmes and activities and Council has completed further air-quality testing this week.
If it becomes necessary to temporarily shift programmes Council will work directly with programme providers on alternatives suitable for their situation.
“We’re actively monitoring the situation and repeating these tests regularly so we can stay on top of any changes as a result of the weather-tightness issues,” James Jefferson says.
General Manager, People and Partnerships, Janice McDougall says the Council has taken a community partnership approach in looking after the Centre.
“We know the services the Centre provides are highly valued by all users, programme providers and participants.
“It’s likely that the Council will need to continue its role as caretaker kaitiaki of the services for a little longer than planned and we’re committed to working in collaboration with the community as we consider the next steps.
“We’ll continue our focus on shaping up strong and sustainable community wellbeing services,” she said.