A report that could offer a solution to traffic issues
standing in the way of Dunedin's waterfront hotel is close to
completion, Dunedin City Council staff say.
The Otago Daily Times sought a progress report
yesterday, nearly a month after the council and Betterways
Advisory Ltd announced a memorandum of understanding on March
10 to try to progress the hotel project.
The two sides were to focus initially on trying to resolve
traffic issues posed by a hotel at 41 Wharf St, before
considering other issues, including the hotel's size and
Council infrastructure and networks general manager Tony
Avery said traffic work was continuing, but a report
detailing the findings was expected ''in the next week or
The council and Betterways had each commissioned a consultant
traffic engineer to help their work and a report on any
solutions, he said.
The parties had met for a full-day workshop on March 17, and
had continued to talk in emails and telephone conference
calls since then, Mr Avery said.
The issues to be addressed included vehicles entering and
leaving the hotel and what impact that would have on the
surrounding road network, he said.
Options to address each of the issues identified were being
It was too soon to discuss them publicly, but that would
happen in time, Mr Avery said.
''We're not going to go through what each of those are ...
until we've worked that through with Betterways. We need to
be able to have those discussions.
''We're not going to talk about that sort of detail until
we've actually sat down, looked at the report, understood it,
and then had a discussion with Betterways.''
The report would include a recommended traffic solution, but
the council and Betterways would then each have to decide
whether it was acceptable, he said.
If it was, the parties would then move on to agreeing the
members of an urban design panel to consider the hotel's
height, appearance and other issues, to see if a compromise
on those issues could be reached.
However, Mr Avery said he was not aware of any discussions
with potential panel candidates yet, and could not say when
they would be confirmed.
That work was ''pending'' until the results of work on
traffic issues was known, he said.
Council chief executive Dr Sue Bidrose last month said the
panel was expected to make a final recommendation to both
sides by the end of the year.
If it was deemed acceptable, the council would then initiate
a plan change to rezone the land, potentially making it
easier for a hotel to be built.
Betterways director Jing Song did not respond to an Otago
Daily Times request for comment yesterday, while director
Steve Rodgers said there was ''nothing to report yet''.
Dunedin Mayor Dave Cull said he was not being updated by
council staff, and was ''just waiting for the end result,
''When they've got something to report, they will make it
known to me.
''Given that I don't have any expertise in that, I don't see
that there's much point in getting involved.''