Thursday 10 March, 2022.
Tairāwhiti is on track to get a purpose-built Emergency Coordination Centre (ECC) by the end of the year.
Plans for the one-million-dollar centre are going through the resource consent process before it can be built on Council land in Lytton West.
Civil Defence manager Ben Green says the building will be the regional headquarters to manage any disaster situation and be equipped for that.
“It will have a crucial purpose for our region to allow emergency services to coordinate the responses for communities when we have emergency events to manage.
“This includes communicating with other Civil Defence Emergency Management (CDEM) groups outside our region and Government agencies,” says Mr Green.
The site is close to the hospital, a helipad and will be built on land outside of the flood and tsunami inundation zones.
To future-proof the new asset, the 230 square metre single-story building will be built on piles.
“We won’t ever have to walk away from this building but can take it with us if the impacts of climate change affect our future hazard modelling.”
Mr Green says the new building is at the preliminary design phase and entering the consent process.
“The site is located so as it will be safe from a significant natural hazard event and it will be staffed during a regional or national emergency.
“This building’s use is very specific in terms of the function it serves – emergency coordination.
“It is designed to have backup communication and power supplies so it can operate in the event of critical infrastructure, like power and internet, being damaged or lost.”
Mr Green says if this facility is activated it means an emergency event is taking place in our region.
“It will also be used to conduct coordination centre training exercises that include emergency partner agencies.
“An ECC is not a community emergency shelter or food storage facility but a place where emergency services can gather to manage any situation when an emergency requires it is activated.”
Residents close to the proposed ECC can expect to see a letter in the coming weeks detailing further information regarding the project.
This is where Tairāwhiti's Emergency Coordination Centre will be built by the end of the year. The single-storey building will be the regional headquarters to manage any disaster situation and equipped for that purpose. Standing onsite in Lytton West are from left Civil Defence and Emergency Management (CDEM) team, manager Ben Green, operator - recovery Marcus Tibble and operator – response Kumeroa Papuni-Tuhaka.