A prominent Auckland lawyer has been appointed the
independent chairman of an evaluation panel to assess
proposals for a convention centre in Queenstown.
Queenstown Lakes District Council Mayor Vanessa van Uden said
Crown solicitor Simon Moore QC had been appointed to the
role, which would give the public confidence the assessment
process was ''fair, objective and applies the necessary
expertise required to ensure the best possible decision is
The Convention Centre Working Group had heard a ''consistent
message'' that a well-developed convention centre project
could deliver significant economic benefits to the district.
It led the council to put out a request for proposals in
September, which closed on Friday.
Several proposals were received.
Ms.van Uden said the response reinforced the position of the
working group and was a tribute to the vision and hard work
of it and the council.
The next step was to work through the detail of whether a
business case existed, and work with a ''consortium of
interests'' to take the project to the next phase.
The experience of new council chief executive Adam Feeley
would also help to build on work done to date, she said.
''Adam previously led the redevelopment of Eden Park. His
input will be a real asset, together with relevant industry
experts both on the panel and available to provide advice to
The evaluation process would be done as soon as possible and
the public informed of the outcome and the next steps in the
''In the meantime, both council and the working party will be
making no further comment, to maintain the integrity of the
evaluation, until the review process and recommendations have
been received from the panel,'' Ms.van Uden said.