My vision for Tauranga is a regionally, nationally and globally connected city. A bold, smart city that embraces partnerships, respects and connects our people through the generations, nurtures our environment with an active focus on sustainability, and celebrates our leadership position as New Zealand’s epicenter for culture, innovation, entrepreneurship and investment.
WHY IS VISION IMPORTANT?
Increasingly, cities compete with cities. This dynamic has been evolving rapidly over the past twenty years as a consequence of globalisation and population flows.
It is important to understand how cities behave in the modern world. Cities are like magnets, in that they can either attract or repel new residents, visitors and business investment.
The city of Tauranga has a strong magnetic pull due to it’s beauty, resources, climate and central geographical position in New Zealand.
While Tauranga is currently New Zealand’s fifth largest city by population, it is a strategically important city due to its forecast population growth, as an epicenter for entrepreneurial innovation, as a key exporter, and the fact we have New Zealand’s highest performing port.
Cities that attract people are cities with a plan. Even a desirable city like Tauranga needs a vision and a plan.
For a city to develop a strong magnetic pull, its leaders need to make conscious decisions about how they want to manage the migration of people, ideas and investment. This can be achieved only if we have a clear vision, implemented by strong, inspiring leadership.
Without a vision, Tauranga risks continuing to fall victim to unmanaged forces like lack of residential housing and infrastructure, and locked up roads.
Tauranga, which translates as ‘Safe Anchorage or Resting Place’, naturally attracts both retirees and younger people; a dynamic that needs to be incorporated into a vision that ‘Connects the Generations’ in a planned and managed way that ensures we can all freely and safely cohabitate in our ‘Shared Safe Harbour’.
I believe Tauranga’s seniors should feel embraced by a city that strives for greater accessibility and safety for our less abled residents.
We also need to attract young creative thinkers and entrepreneurs who choose Tauranga to incubate start-up businesses which, in turn, will attract new and skilled employees who will relocate to work with New Zealand’s leading entrepreneurs.