Te Awamutu Bunnings building to be used as COVID-19 vaccination centre
The Bunnings building in Te Awamutu is set to become a temporary COVID-19 vaccination centre from next month.
Waipā District Council has agreed to lease the building to the Waikato District Health Board to carry out its vaccination programme for residents between August and December 2021.
The building was purchased by Council in May this year to become the future site of Te Ara Wai - Waipā's premier museum showcasing the district's rich history.
Council business support group manager Ken Morris said the agreement put a temporarily empty space to good use.
“Council is still in the planning and design stages of the museum and the fit-out is some time away so the lease of this building to the Waikato DHB is a great use for the space in the meantime.
“This assists the District Health Board as it rolls out the vaccine to our Waipā community and Council is happy to have been able to partner in this way.”
Maree Munro, Waikato’s COVID-19 vaccine programme lead, said at full capacity the Bunnings site in Te Awamutu will be able to vaccinate around 200-250 people a day.
Days and hours are still to be confirmed, but it would likely cover Tuesday through to Saturday from 9am – 4pm.
“The centre will be by appointment only, with the first vaccinations for Group 3 set to begin in early August, once we have fit out the building,” Munro said.
Those in Group 3, which includes people aged 65 and over, those with underlying health conditions, people with disabilities, and pregnant women, are now receiving their invitations to book their vaccination appointments via the national Book My Vaccine system.
Group 4 (the general population) starts on 28 July. This is a big group so vaccinations will be done in age bands, starting with people aged over 60 years. More details will be publicised in newspapers, television and radio channels from this coming weekend.
The lease of the building will run through to January 10th 2022 after which Council will look for and consider other opportunities for community use until it is needed for Te Ara Wai.