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The property belongs to Dunedin deputy mayor Chris Staynes and his wife Cheryl, who are in the early stages of building a new house, Cr Staynes confirmed when contacted.
The scaffold would become a "big tent" which would be used to protect the semi-built house from water damage during construction, allowing work to continue even during "inclement" weather, he said.
The scaffold - standing 8.9m high - did not require resource consent, as it did not exceed the 9m height limit set by the district plan, and the house itself would be "much smaller", he said.
It was due for completion in February, he added.