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Auckland local board to establish tech innovation hub

15 Apr 2016

At local government level, elected local boards make a large number of the decisions that affect our daily lives.

In Auckland, the Waitemata Local Board and one elected representative, in particular, are taking an active role when it comes to encouraging entrepreneurship.

Rob Thomas, who is elected to the Waitemata Local Board, has been the advocate behind a resolution passed this week. It's to establish a new business innovation hub in the Uptown/Newton area.

In the area, there are already three innovative businesses: Auckland Lightning Lab, Industry Connect, and Enspiral. That's in addition to two co-working facilities, Shared Space and The Collective.

The Waitemata Local Board and ATEED have granted $12,000 to further scope the opportunity in terms of long-term value creation, activation options and costs to develop and implement the plan. A plan is expected to be available by the end of May 2016.

The geographic location of the site is the relatively small commercial area in the uptown district that is bounded by Nikai, Ruru and Shaddock Streets. However, the outcomes are expected to impact more widely. All the buildings within the specified area are owned by Auckland Transport and are currently designated for demolition due the end of 2017 as part of the City Rail Link project.

The project’s short-term focus is to tenant the buildings with innovation-related entities aimed at establishing an innovation community, or hub, and laying the foundations for the longer-term economic benefit for uptown and wider Auckland.