The Minister of Local Government David Carter has agreed that Kelvin Park can be leased by Nga Taonga o Nga Tama Toa Trust to build a permanent exhibition space for C Company Memorabilia.
After considering submissions Gisborne District Council agreed to lease Kelvin Park to the trust subject to the minister’s approval in May. Kelvin Park was gifted to the Council in the 1950’s by Winifred Lysnar. Ms Lysnar gifted the top terrace area, where the existing Museum and Lysnar House currently sit, specifically for a museum and art gallery. However, the gifting deed relating to the rest of the Kelvin Park did not allow for buildings to be erected south and east of the main Museum terrace - where the Nga Taonga o Nga Tama Toa Trust gallery would be built.
Council could not grant a lease against the gifting deed without the minister’s approval.
In a letter received last week Mr Carter said that he had weighed up the wishes of the donor as expressed in the documents endowing the land to the Council with the wishes of the wider community. "While the proposed use of the land is not wholly consistent with the endowment, I am satisfied that only a small portion of the endowed land subject to constraints will be used and the purpose behind its use will be in keeping with the overall intent of the endowment."
Kelvin Park is zoned Amenity Reserve and therefore the gallery also needed a resource consent to build in the area. The resource consent was publically notified in May this year and granted in June after hearings were held in front of the independent commissioner Ian Buchanan. Mr Carter also believes that any adverse impacts from the original proposal have been addressed through the resource consent process. His approval is only for the memorial gallery. "My approval does not extend to a different or additional purpose being applied across the whole of the property."
Mr Carter’s staff will liaise with Council when drawing up the deed of approval to ensure this intent is met. When this has been finalised the minister will give his formal approval to grant the lease.
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