Amy is the head of news for the Bay of Plenty Times.

Amy Wiggins: Big city arrivals adding vitality

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Amy Wiggins.
Amy Wiggins.

The massive influx of Aucklanders moving to Tauranga is great for the city.

Yesterday we reported that Aucklanders accounted for more than a quarter of Bay of Plenty property views on Trade Me and about half of one real estate company's sales between January and November last year.

It has pushed house prices up, making it harder for first-home buyers to get into the market and traffic seems to be slowly getting heavier.

But the positives outweigh the negatives.

A growing population is good news for the region, wherever those people come from.

In December $368.8 million was spent in the Bay according to Paymark - an increase of 10.1 per cent compared to last year and the biggest increase in spending in the country.

Retailers told the Bay of Plenty Times Weekend they believed the increase was due, in large part, to the increasing population.

Both the Black Caps cricket matches at Bay Oval last week were sell-outs. An increasing population is exactly what we need to be able to hold more successful, top-level events.

Such events, especially televised sports games, not only encourage more people to come and spend money but are great exposure for the city.

As more people move to the area we will increasingly get the opportunity to enjoy the traditions and culture of others as we already do with the annual Sikh parade and the Diwali festival held for the first time last year.

A growing population will only help bring vitality to the city and see businesses flourish.

Already it is bringing confidence to the region. As we report today, for the third quarter in a row, Bay of Plenty residents are more positive about their region's economic outlook than any other region in New Zealand.

It is the growth that has driven the building boom which has created more jobs, contributed to increased spending and pushed up house prices.

There is no doubt a growing population will bring about changes in the city but, for the most part, they should be for the better.

- Bay of Plenty Times

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