Our town centre

A writer (Chronicle, letters November 2) states the Town Centre Regeneration strategy seems "Unable to hold back the growth in the number of vacant buildings in the city". The good news is that his observations are incorrect on all three counts.

We are a district with a town centre, not a city (yet), and the Town Centre Regeneration Strategy is a 30-year "descriptive" (not prescriptive) map that was only recently passed by council and, the committee barely formed.

Thirdly, about a year ago there were more than 45 empty shops in Victoria Ave's four blocks up to the Ingestre St intersection. There are now about 25. A marked reduction. Yes, there are empty buildings in the side streets but not increasing. In Guyton St alone, four businesses opened in the last eight months. Businesses are opening in the suburbs like Gonville, East Whanganui and Castlecliff.

Some buildings remain empty as the lease is too high, some operators need minimal carparking or shop space that's not there or design-deficient. A significant number are also earthquake-risk and the owners do not wish to invest as yet (or can't afford to).


With that noted, it is Whanganui & Partner's mandated role to seek to attract business to the district generally and the CBD is part of this.

It is not Mainstreet Inc's role to ensure buildings are tenanted, and its members reaffirmed this on October 32. Mainstreet has a seat on the Town Centre Regeneration committee and will advocate strongly for its stakeholders.

I am a resident, a ratepayer and passionate about our entire district. The writer's commentary is respectfully not supported by the facts. The Chronicle's 23,000 readers deserve to reflect and consider, "Awesome, good to consider another view."
I hope this assists.


Fireworks folly

Since the sale of fireworks began early this month, every night someone has let off firecrackers near where I live.

Three nights after Guy Fawkes night, one can still hear firecrackers being set off. That results in my dog becoming agitated, barking and tearing around the house. After a while, I have to let him outside, as he is so upset that he starts tearing into the furniture.
For four nights, including Guy Fawkes night, I bundled him into my car, put baroque music on and drove around until he calmed down.

However, when we get home after an hour or so of driving there always someone setting off another skyrocket or banger, sometimes until midnight. I have also given him half of an anti-anxiety pill that the vet has prescribed to calm him down, to no avail.

I do not want to spoil people's fun, but I think it is important that we think about confining the practice of setting off firecrackers to Guy Fawkes night only and for people who set them off to be made aware of the impact they have on our animals. To the person who has complained to the district council about my dog's barking, I want to apologise if my dog has disturbed them.

Durie Hill

No payback

I read week after week about lowlifes in Wanganui who thieve from people and who consistently get community work as punishment.
So they reoffend.

Why are they not made to pay back the cost of the items stolen?

The pain of paying money out of their benefits will hurt more and wake them up to the fact that the original owners of the stolen property had to work to buy these items that they steal with impunity.

Wanganui East

Thumbs up

Ref: Article in the Chronicle, October 31, "New clinic pulls in patients".

Big thumbs-up and congratulations to Dr Praveen Thadigiri and Jane Dutton. Thumbs down to council and iwi for not getting behind the clinic and the vision Praveen and Jane shared for the people of Wanganui, more so Castlecliff.

I enrolled at Castlecliff Health after my sister informed me of the service she received there. She was more than happy with the treatment. At the medical centre where I had been enrolled, I felt medical professionals overlooked every aspect of my health.

One example: I had severe pain in the knee where I had a total knee replacement two years earlier. I had an x-ray done nothing showed up or was seen. They basically told me the pain was in my head, and I left it at that.

The pain wasn't going away, and this made my mind up to join Castlecliff Health clinic. Praveen sent me for another x-ray to look for the reason for the severe pain. In a matter of a few weeks I was in hospital having a third total knee replacement.

I was so grateful to Praveen for looking for the solution. We all need professional people like this in our community, and I thank him whole-heartedly for his commitment, fighting for what he believed in, for seeing a vision, continuing with it against the odds, battling bureaucracy and never giving up.

Kia kaha, Praveen. Stay strong.