Public submissions limited by QLDC error on Manawa consultation website

by Peter Newport - Dec 16, 2023

For the duration of the QLDC’s public consultation on their controversial new CBD council offices project there has been a broken and incorrect email link on the official feedback site that is likely to have prevented many people from making a submission.

There are two main ways to make a submission. One is using a complex online form that requires the submitter to register their name with the council and only answer very specific, technical questions that have nothing to do with whether the project should go ahead, or the cost. The second main option is to simply email the council and have your say in your own words, not limited to the technical form’s questions, or the inclusion of council manager's "preferred" selection to take the project forwards.

But a formatting error, specific to the Manawa page but not to other QLDC consultation pages, means that clicking on the email link does not work and the email address is in the wrong format if copied and pasted.

The correct address should be [email protected] using “Project Manawa” in the subject line. The QLDC website dropped the “@” symbol from the email address on their consultation website meaning that submission emails would not work, and the email link does not launch when clicked. All other submission pages have the correct email format and are clickable.

Submissions close tomorrow December 17.

The four former mayors who have come out with stinging opposition to the CBD location of the expensive project (that has still not been fully costed) met with mayor Glyn Lewers yesterday (Friday, Dec 15) to express their views. The meeting was classified by QLDC managers as “private” and the group of former mayors was not making any public statement after the meeting.

Crux has formerly submitted over 200 comments submitted as part of our own Manawa survey that shows 94% of respondents were opposed to the project.

QLDC has attempted to dismiss the Crux survey findings saying that our use of a $100 million figure for the cost to ratepayers was misleading, however Crux stands by the this figure as previous council projects have seen budget blowouts of more than 100% and the inclusion of a permanent library and performing arts centre is excluded from the QLDC’s $51 million estimate for just the new council office building. Crux has since revealed that the QLDC office building is 3,500 square metres producing a construction cost of over $14,000 a square metre, over double that of what expert construction sources say should be achievable.

QLDC has also refused to release data to Crux on how much has been spent so far on the CBD project and a 2014 KPMG report that Crux understands advises the council against the current Manawa plan.


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