James Barron is seeking a Whanganui council seat in the hopes of making smarter decisions for the district and says he's reduced his workload in order to step up to the next level.

"I've been an IT consultant running large projects for everything from corporates, hospital boards, up through to councils and central government here, in Australia and the UK, so I'm used to running projects and seeing them through."

Barron lived in Wellington before moving to Whanganui six years ago and settling in Castlecliff, where he said he's been part of a "fantastic degree of change" for the suburb.

"The key is bringing people along with us and articulating a vision that everyone has a consensus into.


"It's a lot of listening and engagement and doing things once and doing it right, rather than wasting money."

When it comes to housing, Barron said the issue needed a "multiple-prong solution".

"We see council approving things like the development in Springvale and I'm all for that, but what we will see there is new sections worth $200,000 which will have $400,000 or $500,000 homes built on them.

"That's $550,000 to $800,000 homes which a number of Whanganui people can afford, and it will accommodate the numbers of people seeing the value in Whanganui and relocating here.

"However, it doesn't really address what average Whanganui lifetime people can afford."

Barron suggested subdividing properties could be one option and said he wants to see the process made easier.

"I'd like to see council put some focus on that, maybe doing the same kind of thing we do for small businesses where there's a central contact person who can give news of what it costs and put you on to surveyors who are lined up to do the work."

Barron said he's hopeful to take what has been achieved in Castlecliff to a wider level for the district.


"I think Whanganui and the last council hasn't been badly governed but sometimes new blood brings a new level of ambition of what can be achieved."

Barron is also a candidate for Whanganui District Health Board.