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Coromandel Harbour Project - Coromandel Marine Farmers Association taking on consent for Sugarloaf Wharf development.

04 May 2015

A Draft Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) is being worked on between our Council and the Coromandel Marine Farmers Association (CMFA) in the first steps towards an upgrade at the Sugarloaf (Te Kouma) Wharf.

The draft MOU is aimed for completion in June for consideration by both parties. It will then be taken to the Economic Development Committee and then to the Council, along with a Project Definition on the Sugarloaf Development, for a decision to proceed or not.

"If Council supports the continuation of the project, the CMFA will then begin the process of applying for and submitting a Resource Consent application," says David Hammond, Council Chief Executive and Project Sponsor. The CMFA will submit the Consent at their cost," says Mr Hammond.

"Our Council is considering whether it will underwrite 50% of the costs if the Consent fails," says Mr Hammond. "We're currently working through the final details on the MOU with the CMFA," he says. "Managing risk and the quality of the consent strategy and application is critical to us."

The proposed development at the Sugarloaf Wharf will allow for future aquaculture industry expansion and better health and safety management of the restricted site area and activity conflict between the aquaculture industry and existing recreational users. There is also the potential within a future expanded facility to consider accommodating the 360 Ferry from Auckland, which currently comes in at Hannaford's Wharf.

In August 2014, Council approved the start of the resource consent application process to expand Sugarloaf Wharf to serve the aquaculture industry and address health and safety and congestion issues

This will now involve the CMFA applying for and submitting Consent for what it proposes to develop at the Wharf. The consent will then need to be approved by both our Council and the Waikato Regional Council as well as going through all the required RMA checks and balances.


Longer Term development – Inner Harbour Project.

The extension and development of the Sugarloaf Wharf is one of two strands of work in our Coromandel Harbour Facilities Project.

The second strand of the Harbour Project is investigating the development of the Coromandel “Inner Harbour and is a much longer term project," says Mr Hammond. This focuses on the possibility of a half-metre dredging of Furey's Creek for charter boats and recreational boaties, and/or a proposed dredged basin concept in the vicinity of the Coromandel Wharf.

“We’ve wrestled with both short-term facility needs and longer-term opportunities and growth pressures within the Coromandel Harbour and arrived at a development model addressing the Sugarloaf as the priority in a partnership with industry,” says Mr Hammond.

“The ‘Inner Harbour’ option around Coromandel Wharf accommodating a commercial and aquaculture area to the north of Coromandel wharf, and recreational and ferry usage to the south of the wharf with a model of marina and on-shore activity to help offset development cost is potentially a longer-term project,” says Mr Hammond.

“This longer-term option will only proceed from building specific relationships with external funders," says Mr Hammond. "Our funding partners of choice would be Regional and Central Government stakeholders and we will need to examine key issues such as harbour contamination, infrastructure upgrades, consenting processes and external funding," he says. "Any project of this scale will not be funded solely by our Council and we are not ruling out commercial partnership at this early stage to see this project progress."

A draft business case which looks at the potential for development of the Inner Harbour has been completed and is currently being reviewed internally by our Business Project Review Team.

“We had indicated that the Business Case would be presented to Council in May but the Review Team has recommended some further detail be included within the document. As a result of these changes, the Business Case will be prepared as an Investment Proposal document, which will to go before our Economic Development Committee and then on to Council,” says Mr Hammond.

Our Council is also looking to contribute $10k to support work on an independent Business Case based on Barry Brickell's Inner Harbour concept. This concept is being proposed as part of the long-term investigation for the Inner Harbour. Driving Creek Railway founder and renowned artist Barry Brickell has proposed a 1.2km pier likely running alongside the existing Coromandel Wharf allowing for a railway and ferry system.

To find out more about the history of the Coromandel Harbour project go to

To find out more about the Coromandel Pier and Rail project go to