By Gurbir Singh:
The sword of uncertainty hanging on Hamilton’s i-SITE is finally over. The i-SITE now finally moves to its new location next week in ArtsPost- part of the Waikato Museum operation on Victoria St.
The i-SITE is operated by Hamilton City Council, and is part of a network of visitor and tourism information services around New Zealand.
The Hamilton i-SITE has had a presence in Garden Place in recent years but will close its current location on Sunday, 22 September.
If it was up to Mayor Andrew King, the i-SITE shop would have shut in July last year. His reasons were visitors now use the internet to plan and seek information rather than visiting a physical site.
“Pick it up and move it into reception and save somewhere between $500,000 and $800,000 a year,” he was quoted to have said at that time.
Read our earlier related story here: https://www.newsviews.co.nz/uncertain-future-for-hamiltons-i-site/
In his 10-year plan, the Mayor had recommended moving the i-SITE from its current location in the Garden Place into the council’s reception area itself. This, according to his proposal, would save about $5.6m over 10 years.
The i-SITE will remain closed on 23 September and 24 September while it relocates, reopening on Wednesday 25 September on the ground floor of ArtsPost.
In its new location, i-SITE will continue to offer visitor information and booking assistance, as well as event ticketing services, quality retail products and artwork by local and national artists.
The decision to relocate Hamilton i-SITE was made during the Council’s 2018-2028 10-Year Plan deliberations, as the Council sought a more cost-effective model to retain the service.