The Kūaotunu Dark Sky Project kicked off in earnest with the commissioning of Kāhu Environmental Consultants to carry out an initial scoping study in May 2022. The cost of this study was underwritten by the Ōpito Bay Ratepayers Association.
Kāhu Environmental were chosen for this study as they are currently working woth the South Wairapa and Carterton District Councils to establish a Dark Sky Reserve, so are familiar with the issues and process required. We expect this to deliver significnt efficiencies in the execution of the project.
The primary objective of the scoping study is to gain an understanding of the scope of work required to establish a Dark Sky Community, and the corresponding cost.
This will be achieved by:
- Meeting with the Kūaotunu Dark Sky project team to understand the full scope of the project, timeframes, resourcing and funding capacity, and to determine the preferred plan change approach
- Meeting with Thames-Coromandel District Council Planning staff to ascertain:
- in principle support for a plan change
- resourcing capacity, and
- their preference of plan change approach to be taken
- Engagement with the project team to understand the specific lighting requirements necessary and to identify possible options for achieving the light emission outcomes.
- Initial review of the Thames-Coromandel District Plan to ascertain scale of change to the plan provisions required.
- Initial discussions with a lighting expert to establish the scope of any required technical advice.
The output form the study will be a brief report sumarising the findings, and setting out a high level project plan and associated costings to complete the work.