Sugarloaf Wharf development now being led by Coromandel Marine Farmers Association. 28 April 2016 The proposed development of a piled wharf attached to the existing reclamation at the Sugarloaf Wharf (Te Kouma) will now be driven by the Coromandel Marine Farmers Association (CoroMFA). Over the past year our Council has been working on a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with the CoroMFA on options to improve the Sugarloaf Wharf facility, as part of our wider Coromandel Harbour Facilities Project. The MOU was officially signed this week by the CoroMFA following endorsement by Council at its meeting in April. "We're really pleased to now have reached agreement with the CoroMFA on a MOU, which will see it take on the consenting and building process development at the Sugarloaf rather than it being Council's responsibility" says Mayor Glenn Leach. “CoroMFA will now look to fund the development by internal capital raising and potential central government initiatives if they become available," says the Mayor. "This means the expansion will have no impact on local rates, while ensuring the important aquaculture industry continues to grow for the region,” he says. "The MOU helpfully clarifies and records the relationship between TCDC and CoroMFA and who will do what, for expanding the Sugarloaf Wharf facility," says Gilbert James, Chair of CoroMFA. The next steps will be preparing details around the CoroMFA's occupancy rights in support of their resource consent application, as well as providing more detail on the shared costs of running the existing Sugarloaf Wharf for both aquaculture and recreational users. A lease will be prepared - once an interest has also been granted to TCDC by the Crown, with due consideration of iwi interests. "In parallel to investigating development of the Sugarloaf we've been working to resolve land ownership title for reclaimed land there, which requires on-going iwi input and consultation," says Thames-Coromandel District Acting Chief Executive Ben Day. Council owns the infrastructure upon the reclamation but doesn't have the title to the foreshore and reclamation. Iwi have signalled their proprietary interests in the foreshore and seabed, and therein the footprint upon which the reclamation sits, via various Treaty settlement-related processes notably including for Hauraki iwi. In the meantime, our Council will continue to work with the CoroMFA on operational and compliance improvements to help alleviate congestion issues at the Sugarloaf. Future demand for Coromandel Harbour boat ramps and wharves. Our Council has started work on a "Demand Management Initiative," which aims to spread the recreational fishing load across the Coromandel to help alleviate pressure on the Sugarloaf Wharf. A profile of all available ramps will be developed over the coming months with a view to educating users about alternative ramps to the Sugarloaf during peak times. Promotion of alternative ramps will focus on ramps within the Coromandel ward area initially, so as not to lose local revenues where possible. We're also very supportive of the recently proposed Park and Ride initiative that should help alleviate parking issues at Hannaford's Wharf. If you have any information about boat ramps or beach launching sites in the area that might be unknown to TCDC please contact our area office 07 866 1002 to discuss. The Inner Harbour Project. The 'Inner Harbour' concept relates to investigating the longer-term option of development around Coromandel Wharf and potentially Furey’s Creek, which could accommodate a commercial area, space for charter boats, recreational and ferry usage. Potentially a model with a marina and on-shore activity could be developed to help offset development costs, if there was demand. The Expression of interest (EOI) for potential partners is out in the market place and available for viewing on our website at www.tcdc.govt.nz/coroharbourproject Project Team update. With David Hammond's departure as Chief Executive and Project Executive of the Coromandel Harbour Project, his replacement is Acting Chief Executive Ben Day. Jacqui Thorby is our Council's Programme Manager with a key part of the role including liaison with the CoroMFA on its Sugarloaf Wharf development. Coromandel and Thames Ward Area Manager Greg Hampton will continue to be on the Coromandel Harbour Project Board. The Project Team will continue working with the Coromandel Stakeholders Working Group for updates and to get feedback on the Sugarloaf Wharf project and the Inner Harbour Project.