In 2021, SWIFT’s major project, a new $14 million Trades Training Centre, started to become a reality on the corner of State Highway 1 and Chambers Street, Tokoroa, when Tirau Earthmovers began work following the site blessing, in July.
The South Waikato Trades Training Centre development is being funded through the South Waikato Investment Fund Trust (SWIFT) with partnership funding through the Provincial Growth Fund and Trust Waikato.
The site was blessed by Raukawa kaumātua Te Hapuku Rikiriki and Poihaere Barrett at a ceremony attended by representatives from the South Waikato district’s diverse cultures. Raukawa Charitable Trust Tumu Whakarae (General Manager) Maria Te Kanawa said the Trades Training Centre will enable many South Waikato rangatahi to train in Tokoroa rather than travelling out of the district away from the support of their whānau.
The Trades Training Centre is a great project that reflects the Trust’s objectives as a community-owned economic development fund of advancing South Waikato’s prosperity. The facility is being developed alongside Toi Ohomai Institute of Technology which will be the key tenant and training provider. The Centre will cater for up to 500 students a year.
For SWIFT, this development opportunity offers more than just a building. SWIFT facilitated the opportunity for South Waikato tradespeople and building suppliers to tender for this work to help the local economy and to provide job and learning opportunities.
The Centre will be a combined 3,500m2 space purpose built for learning, with four workshops, a commercial kitchen, café and barbershop.
South Waikato District Council Mayor Jenny Shattock said the new Trades Training Centre was an excellent example of the South Waikato education, business and local government sectors working together to help the district thrive and grow economically and socially.
The Centre’s location near State Highway 1 will provide a fabulous new gateway to the northern entrance of Tokoroa and will complement the recent town centre redevelopment.
Toi Ohomai Board of Directors Chairperson, Catherine Cooney, said the new campus will help breathe life into the community and it was exciting to see this initiative come to fruition after all the planning.
This campus will help provide a skilled workforce to see the South Waikato prosper and SWIFT is delighted to be leading this project for the community.