Hotel carpark stalls for now

An artist's impression of the proposed car park.
An artist's impression of the proposed car park.
A four-level car park to be built behind the former chief post office in Dunedin has been put on hold.

Building owner Geoff Thomson, of Distinction Hotels, said a ''more cost-effective solution'' was being investigated.

''The costing came in a wee bit high so we are re-evaluating how we are going to do it.''

Mr Thomson said the Bond St project had resource and building consent and would ''go ahead at some stage''.

He hoped it would be of similar size, with parking on the roof, but designs were being researched, he said.

Mr Thomson said he was ''passionate'' about the redevelopment of the former chief post office.

''It's still a magnificent building - I love it. I can't wait to see it up and running and completed.''

He was pleasantly surprised at how passionate Dunedin residents were about the building.

Car park designs favoured by the public, such as underground parking, were often uneconomic because car parks failed to provide a financial return, he said.

''You can't afford to be stupid about it.''

The stalling of the car park project should not slow the progress of the redevelopment of the nine-floor heritage building in Princes St, he said.

The Distinction Dunedin hotel reception would be accessed from Bond St, the ground and first floors were occupied by Silver Fern Farms, about half of the second floor was occupied by Multipeak Health and Fitness and nearly 600sq m on the second floor remained vacant, he said.

The remaining five floors of the hotel would have 121 rooms, he said.

Mr Thomson said a couple of interested parties were investigating the vacant second-floor space and he was optimistic about finding tenants.

''Someone will come along. It's a good space.''

He declined to comment on how the budget of the multimillion-dollar project was tracking.

''You just never know.''

- shawn.mcavinue@odt.co.nz

Carpark design

My main concern is still the look of the carpark. The one in the design above looks great, but I suspect its looks may have significantly added to the cost.

Fingers crossed they won't give up and plomp a big 'pre fab' looking carpark there like the others in town. 

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