Emi Kanayama and Peti Seiuli have called the cabin they
have lived in at the old Lakeview Holiday Park home for the
past two years and are against the cabins being removed to
make way for the proposed Queenstown convention centre.
Photo by Christina McDonald.
People living in cabins with cheap
rents are nervous about where they will find similar priced
accommodation in Queenstown if a convention centre is built on
the land the cabins occupy above the resort.
Lakeview is the preferred site for the proposed convention
centre and SkyCity Entertainment Group is the preferred
operator, but no final decisions have been made.
Many who live in the cabins work as housekeepers or other
essential resort jobs, the residents including young couples,
young families and groups of flatmates.
Residents such as Emi Kanayama and Peti Seiuli have lived in
a cabin for the past two years and they have made a written
submission against the proposed convention centre being on
The masseuse and musician are not against the convention
centre but question where people on lower wages in Queenstown
will live if the cabins are removed to make way for the $50
''I think the centre is a good idea, but I think Lakeview
isn't a good site ... because of Queenstown's lack of
affordable housing,'' Mr Seiuli said.
He worried about the ''mass displacement'' if people were
removed from their cabins.
It is estimated the 150 small cabins, half of which are owned
by the council and the rest privately owned, house around 100
Some of the cabins are vacant. Queenstown Lakes District
Council chief executive Adam Feeley said the cabins were on
both freehold and reserve land and only had a licence to
occupy council land until 2015.
It was inevitable some of the cabins would need to be
removed, ''but it is too early at this stage to say how
many'', he said.
Many were in a poor state and, while they might be considered
affordable, ''many would be regarded as far from appropriate
in terms of insulation and quality - not to mention visual
appeal - that is appropriate to CBD Queenstown'', he said.
Ms Kanayama said she and Mr Seiuli both ''really like living
here; we don't want to move out''.
Every day people were asking what was going to happen and
''how long we can live here?''Mr Feeley said houses built on
high-value land were not affordable unless someone chose to
subsidise the cost.
Estimates suggested Lakeview land values could range from
$1000-$5000 per sq m, while ''affordable'' residential land
was considered to be in the range of $400-$500 per sq m, he
''Accordingly, no-one could seriously suggest that Lakeview
is `affordable' land, but rather that it could be used for
such purposes by discounting its value.''
As of yesterday morning, 730 submissions had been received on
the proposed centre after councillors voted to consult the
public a month ago.
Next Tuesday, oral submissions from the public will be heard
on the proposal and a week later an extraordinary council
meeting to consider the convention centre proposal is