Wednesday April 4, 2018
Lower Hutt’s economy solid
Lower Hutt is retail sector has shrugged off the after-effects of the 2016 Kaikoura earthquake and the wider economy is firing on all cylinders, according to recent data. The most recent available figures, based on card transactions, show retail spending in Lower Hutt during the December 2017 quarter jumped 14.4 per cent compared to the same 2016 quarter. This compares with 4.9 per cent growth in Wellington City and 3.6 per cent in Porirua for the same period. Lower Hutt central business district retailers experienced 13.9 per cent revenue growth for the period pulling in $529 million for the calendar year. Petone retailers’ income was boosted 17.4 per cent with a total annual revenue of $375 million. The total retail spend in Lower Hutt for the year was $1.21 billion.
Lower Hutt mayor Ray Wallace says retail is just one of several sets of indicators that show the city’s economy has firmed in recent years. “So it’s encouraging to see a resilient and hard-working city in action and council’s vision of the rejuvenation of our city being realised, but there’s still much to be done,” he says. Last financial year, an additional 126 businesses opened their doors in Lower Hutt bringing the total to 10,158. This number has steadily risen from 9627 in 2013, when council first introduced economic development incentives. Lower Hutt’s gross domestic product rose 1.4 per cent to $4.77 billion last financial year. This follows a decade of average annual growth of only 0.1 per cent in the wake of the global financial crisis. After several decades of relatively
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flat population growth, Lower Hutt’s population in recent years has started to rise – an estimated 1.4 and 1.3 per cent for each of the last two financial years. This brings the number of residents to an estimated 104,700, compared to 101,000 in 2013. This may not seem like a dramatic movement but between the 2006 and 2013 censuses, the city’s population rose by only 0.55 per cent. To house this growing population, the number of completed residential builds climbed from 232 in the 2016 financial year to 325 in 2017. The value of building work for the 2017 calendar year was $264 million, up 21 per cent on the previous year. Last year also saw a 10 per cent increase in building consents, and 2018 is looking to be a busy year with a number of significant projects in the pipeline.
Treena Taikato, Xeina Willams, Nuirangi McGregor, and Eternal-Joyce Walker – the crew at XL Café. In February the café had only been open for a few weeks but is already bringing life back into Homedale Village. PHOTO: DAN WHITFIELD
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New YOUTH THEATRE INITIATIVE in WAINUIOMATA
Catering for youth aged 9 years and over, who are interested in musical theatre. A fun and safe environment where children can learn theatrical skills and improve their confidence Come to our FREE Taster Sessions on:
Sunday 8 April 3-5pm Sunday 15 April 3-5pm Louise Bilderbeck Hall, 102 Main Road, Wainuiomata Enquiries to: ActingOutNZ@gmail.com Facebook: Acting Out NZ • Play fun drama games • Make new friends • Discover what Acting Out is all about
it’s that time again Every three years we turn to you to ask for your feedback on what we plan to do over the next 10 years. You may be wondering what you can do to influence the future of the city or if the Long Term Plan really affects you? The Long Term Plan focuses on the many services delivered by Hutt City Council. It’s relevant to everyone whether you are young or old, a resident or a visitor, a rate payer or not. It even affects your beloved pet. There are lots of different ways to get involved: • Go online • Talk to our friendly staff • Attend one of our public meetings • Complete a submission form Consultation is open 3 April to 3 May. To have your say or find out more see our website at huttcity.govt.nz/longtermplan
Wainuiomata News 04-04-18