Council to sell land to Ngai Tamarawaho

Image: Google Maps.

Tauranga city councillors this week kept a promise made to the Ngai Tamarawaho Hapu 14 years ago, and has agreed to sell or gift the land occupied by Mobil Chapel Street to the hapu.

The reason for the decision lies in a promise made by the council to the hapu in 2004, when the city wanted the land on Chapel Street for the second harbour bridge.

The first land swap was to be for car park land at the Tauranga end of the railway bridge. When the council decided the southern pipeline would pass though that land it reneged on the agreement.

The possibility of 60 Chapel Street was the next property, and even though the council no longer required the harbourside restaurant carpark land, it has not been spoken of again.

“This particular issue today started 14 years ago,” says Ngai Tamarawaho spokesperson Buddy Mikaere.

“Entitlement to the land in Dive Crescent as you councillors all know was given up in return for NZTA being able to construct the off-ramp from the harbour bridge.

“At that time the council's promise was that we would receive a replacement piece of land in exchange. That piece of land was identified as being the land end of the railway bridge. We were subsequently asked to give that land up so the council's pipeline project could proceed.

“We now have the situation where seven years ago we were promised the land at Chapel Street as being a replacement for that which we had given up. So this is momentous day for us as well.”

The hapu previously offered to buy the land off the council at the 2007 value, using the lease payments. Details of the price and sale process have been kept confidential with chief executive Garry Poole empowered to negotiate.

The sale is been opposed by ratepayers Rob Paterson and Robert King who say the original deal which they claim is itself suspect, was a swap for non-commercial land.

Chapel Street's valuation by Colliers in February 2017 is $2.6m land value plus $1m improvements, giving a total value of $3.6m.

Councillor Larry Baldock says the issue isn't the final price that will be obtained by the council, it's the fulfilment of the council's promise made in 2004.

He finds it amazing the hapu gave the council the land in the first place, given the history between Tauranga City and Ngai Tamarawaho going back to the 1840s.

“They gave up that right to hold onto the land which in the understanding of the day was very clearly going to be given to them in the treaty settlement,” says Larry.

“Without their consent there would be no bridge today and I would add to that that there would be no Route K, no Route J, no Route P. All of those roads have bene achieved for the benefit of our city with their generous co-operation.”

The council promised to enter negotiations to buy Chapel Street in 2006.

“For us it was a sweet deal because we could see the Crown coming along, buying Chapel Street and giving it to them. It would cost us nothing because the land in Dive Crescent we bought and then sold to NZTA, and it didn't cost us - a little bit of a difference in valuation, but by and large it was at no cost to council,” says Larry.

“We thought we had a good deal here until in 2011 OTS said ‘We don't go round buying land'. It's obvious why they didn't because there would be no end to it.”

He agreed with Mayor Greg Brownless that it is not about the treaty, it's about the council promise.

“It's not just about keeping the promise. We need to consider about not keeping the promise, and consider the benefits we have received for the promise. We need to consider the compensation for the delay in fulfilling that promise.”


Scams and mistruths continue unabated

Posted on 05-09-2017 17:29 | By kellbell

The usual suspects will believe what they want to believe no mattter what the facts are .There was no promise given here because no one was in a position or authorised to give any such promise.Ex Councillor Guy's assessment of the situation is basically correct.Most of us are sick and tired of this ongoing B/S. Attitude of Council staff and some Councillors is unbelievable and untenable.

No one has caved,

Posted on 05-09-2017 10:16 | By R. Bell

T.C.C has made the only moral decision on offer.It is not T.C.C who devalue our society, It is those who preach anarchy at every chance they get. People like you " missy". It is why you NEVER get your way, Robin Bell.

The end result

Posted on 04-09-2017 13:41 | By MISS ADVENTURE

Stupid TCC have caved and devalued assets own by and paid for by ratepayers. No promises were made, as verified e.g. by the master of giveaways Baldock, yet they all agreed to do it even though the Public approved and consulted on policy did not permit this to happen. What a strange world we live in? NB: all settlements were sorted at Governement level, full and final. If there was issue here then NZTA should hve been sent the bill for the freebee part, that was there problem to sort.

@ Sg1nz

Posted on 24-08-2017 15:20 | By MISS ADVENTURE

Don't worry about me, I am one of the calmest persons alive. The effort is being made to help others by me, an entirely honourable occupation indeed. I see a "wrong" and try to assist the writer/s to remedy it so as to see the accidently mistake and error. This helps all humanity as then the weak are assisted to see the world in a different, better and more accurate light. Call it humanitarian, certainly better than the methods of for example Edde Armen and the likes.

Miss Adventure?

Posted on 23-08-2017 20:49 | By Sg1nz

Why so angry?Our elected member stood up and made a bold decision in support of the facts to hand. It's clear what previous councils have done and not done. I understand you don't agree with the outcome? Is that because of race, or just a desire to pull down those that chose to stand up and lead?Given your responses to others, no doubt I will receive an equally attacking and negative response, but I always hope for the best.

Thank you for yourself appointed critique,

Posted on 23-08-2017 08:21 | By R. Bell

on my comments mis-sad. Backhanded praise is as good as the real thing. Just waiting for your usual deluge of detritus. Robin Bell.

Bell and Circumstantial Evidence?

Posted on 22-08-2017 11:43 | By MISS ADVENTURE

I agree, at best your comments fall into that category, if not then a way lesser level. They indeed speak for them selves, I encourage you to speak up (and Pappa) the more you say the more you distredit what you say you support. Bring it on, more more please. Least we forget Robson, with one posting raised, challenged and nailed Pappa/you/supporters. Game Set match, all over rover!

Despite not offering anything tangible,

Posted on 20-08-2017 10:31 | By R. Bell

missadvent inadvertently brings up a good point. Circumstantial Evidence. 1. How likely is it that upon being asked to relinquish their land for the bridge, they would not have received assurance of another property. 2. How likely, that was repeated when council took away the replacement land. If the issue then remains the location at Chapel St. then clearly the anti faction display sour grapes. The evidence, both actual and circumstantial leads to the resolution as above. Sweet deals, should be reciprocal, Ngai Tamarawaho deserve it. Political courage is required T.C.C. in the face of the constant attacks by self appointed, minority anarchist voices, who have no authority or mandate to speak on behalf of ratepayers. Robin Bell.

@ sg1nz

Posted on 19-08-2017 11:27 | By MISS ADVENTURE

There was no "ACTUAL" promise, there is simply a hint, desire and claim that there was something, for which there is no evidence at all from any quarter at all to even hint at it. End result is that this is a meaningless throw-away of rataepayers monies. That there is no obligation whatsoever under the real treaty as that was settled (right or wrong) via Government full and final. No one has provided a single bit of evidence (fact) and attempted to prove anything at all. This is simply a case of moan, hand out and get. Not a good example at all of anything here.

@ Murray.Guy

Posted on 19-08-2017 11:22 | By MISS ADVENTURE

NZTA meeting its obligations is a fickle thing, they seem to do it as and when suits. That changes like the wind. Take the Welcome bay tunnel saga, half a job done, pointless result and Tauranga Ratepayers left with the bill for the rest.

How many times,can one renege on a deal?

Posted on 18-08-2017 11:00 | By R. Bell

It seems the answer is, as many times as is necessary,to screw the other guy. Take the land first, second and now third. Of course promises were made Murray. Agreements rest on promises. Yet again the avarice of the european comes to the fore. Kick these ratepayer pressure groups into touch, once and for all, and find an honourable solution, NOW. Robin Bell.

Unless I am mistaken !!

Posted on 17-08-2017 23:14 | By The Caveman

The bit of land in question, was never "originally" land. That bit of land came into existence when the causeway from what is now Marsh Street to Maxwells Road was built in the late 1950s / early 1960s. It was created by filling in the harbour, just like most of the land on the east side of the Chapel Street all created by harbour infill. Prior to that the only way to Otumoteai was via Waihi Road etc. (or if you were game - across the railway bridge on foot.


Posted on 17-08-2017 23:13 | By CC8

To even have to admit to people that I live in Tauranga, where politicians are so corrupt and gutless and certain people here are so self centered that all they do is look for a way they can scam the rest of us. If Mr Brownlees , and Baldock are so bent on keeping promises, maybe they should go back and read and remember the promises they made in the run up to the last election instead of giving in to trickery and giving away property to a MINORITY faction within our population.

Morepork: Can you substantiate your position on this, Murray? - YES

Posted on 17-08-2017 20:27 | By Murray.Guy

The meeting agenda contains NO evidence of ANY promise. See here: ... You can listen here to Cr. Baldock confirming there is NO evidence of ANY promise. There is an undertaking to have discussions with the OTS in 2006: Cr. Baldock reminds me of 'The inconvenient truth', used somewhat selectively these days it seems in things 'politics'. There is NO affidavit in regards any promise from former CEO Stephen Town, surely easily obtained. No copies of ANY documents in the Meeting Agenda that confirms the OTS had agreed to include 80 Dive Crescent in any settlement outcome, a small piece of, I think, railways land (1800m2 or so in size). This was sold back to the Crown, so why not handed over by the OTS? All that aside, why is the NZTA not meeting this alleged obligation as they 'were/are' responsible for costs?

A promise is a promise

Posted on 17-08-2017 20:18 | By Sg1nz

TCC elected and exec made a commitment and now they are keeping it. Sad to see some people here that appear to be motivated by race. Glad to see others standing up, for a promise. Otherwise we would have no bridge.

@ waiknot

Posted on 17-08-2017 17:17 | By MISS ADVENTURE

None, ever! There is only suggestions of it and lots of desires and dreams, wish hadda, but nothing real, proved whatsoever.

@Murray Guy

Posted on 17-08-2017 17:05 | By morepork

Can you substantiate your position on this, Murray? If it is true that no promise was made (by anyone empowered to make it) then it would appear that the Hapu were either misled or deceived into expecting recompense. Either way it does not reflect well on TCC. If the assurances to Ratepayers that you say were made, were actually made, then they must be honoured, just as a promise to the Hapu must be. A bad business for all concerned and especially the Ratepayers, who are considered "cannon fodder" all too often. TCC must know that if they promise something to ANYONE, that promise MUST be kept.


Posted on 17-08-2017 15:02 | By waiknot

I'm getting really tired of these half truths that appear to come out of council. If a promise was made it must be kept. Now the question is, was a promise ever made by council

Lotto - Tauranga Council style

Posted on 17-08-2017 13:21 | By MISS ADVENTURE

No need to buy a ticket, invitation only, the lottery result as you desire it from behind closed doors.

Mr Bell, Sour, yes, very sour, nit-picking, NO.

Posted on 17-08-2017 13:12 | By Murray.Guy

TCC is most certainly not 'doing the right thing'. Tauranga City Council are using / misappropriating ratepayer / community resources and funds for purposes not authorized, consulted on or in reality liable for. I understand that 'integrity applied processes and outcomes' are applied sparingly by many who abuse positions of trust (likely why they ran for office, write posts to the media) who would choose to abandon ethics, basic morality and Local Government legal obligations, in pursuit of personal gain or for others, but nit picking I am not, SOUR, most definitely. This IS a CROWN obligation, NOT a ratepayers. The original land allegedly offered and accepted is available, The Strand Extension (railway bridge), and it has been known for two years, take it. My frustration in regards this specific matter is compounded that Local Maori have been significantly used & abused by authorities, as ratepayers likewise are!


Posted on 17-08-2017 13:05 | By Denny G

Buddy Mikaere strikes again !!!. Baldock and Molloy spending ratepayers money with out authority from the ratepayers to do so. Where is the referendum that says T.C.C. HAS to make a land swap ?

@ Murray

Posted on 17-08-2017 13:00 | By MISS ADVENTURE

All yousay Murray is 100% correct.

Larry's forgots again?

Posted on 17-08-2017 12:58 | By MISS ADVENTURE

That Tauranga without Route k-J-P would be a lot better off, some hundreds of millions of debt better off in fact.

No promise ever made

Posted on 17-08-2017 12:56 | By MISS ADVENTURE

This is simply a moan-get circular run-around that leaves Tauranga Rateoayers out of pocket again.


Posted on 17-08-2017 12:41 | By Laurie

I hear a bell ringing a familiar tune - if Mobil don't renew their lease it won't be such a cash cow - at the end of day this is not about returning tribal land its about "money money money" !!!


Posted on 17-08-2017 12:39 | By rastus

R Bell may be right that assumed promises have either been broken or fudged however the ongoing 'behind the doors' negotiations with Maori interests have to stop. If anyone has a legitimate claim over any land then all negotiations should be open/transparent. Anyone who is trying to bring the truth to the debate should never be abused and told they are sour and nit picking - One wonders what R Bell hopes to achieve with their obviously biased opposition to 'truth'

Promises given, promises broken, seems

Posted on 17-08-2017 11:59 | By R. Bell

Not good enough. T.C.C. is doing the right thing, make it right, and don’t listen to sour, nit picking individuals. Robin Bell. (edited)

There was NO PROMISE by TCC Council, JUST broken promises by The Crown to TCC ... Again!

Posted on 17-08-2017 11:08 | By Murray.Guy

There was NO PROMISE by TCC Council to the Ngai Tamarawaho Hapu that can be authenticated, nothing in writing. AT NO time was this matter discussed by Tauranga City Council elected members in regards the construction of the second harbor bridge. There were TWO assurances / promises made to 'the Tauranga Council, it's ratepayers and community' that 1) While it's agreed the Council was going banker for the NZTA bridge project, no, ifs, buts or maybes, the ratepayer was to be repaid in full (including interest) and reimbursed by the NZTA (Crown). That MUST include this property deal. 2) The Crown has consistently assured communities that the ratepayers would NOT be impacted in regards 'Treaty Settlements'. In this instance, we are told (no evidence available) that the OTS has promised 80 Dive Crescent to the Ngai Tamarawaho Hapu, as part of it's negotiations. This is NOT a ratepayer obligation.

no bridge today

Posted on 17-08-2017 09:59 | By Capt_Kaveman

NZTA can take any land it wishes for the construction of roading, as long as there is no handouts then im ok with it


Posted on 17-08-2017 09:35 | By whatsinaname

What are they going to do with the site????

Credibility boost guys

Posted on 17-08-2017 09:12 | By Papamoaner

A promise is a promise and historically, governments are not good at keeping them. This is good.

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