Meeting on heritage building reuse

An initiative to promote the economic reuse of Dunedin's heritage buildings has been unveiled.

The Dunedin City Council has formed a new steering group, which will hold a public meeting on Tuesday to discuss ways of planning for the future of Dunedin's heritage buildings.

The move comes as controversy continues about Christchurch developer Luke Dirkzwager's plans to demolish a block of buildings at 372-392 Princes St, in a protected townscape precinct.

After a public hearing, a resource consent hearings committee gave an interim decision last month, indicating it was "of a mind" to grant consent.

The decision would depend on Mr Dirkzwager's company, Prista Apartments, coming up with a design more representative of the character of the precinct.

The council's steering group, chaired by Cr Dave Cull, has invited owners of pre-1930 commercial buildings to the meeting next week.

Cr Fliss Butcher, council staff and New Zealand Historic Places Trust (NZHPT) Otago-Southland area manager Owen Graham were also members of the steering group.

Cr Cull said the group would seek two representatives from building owners, to advise on planning for the future of Dunedin's heritage buildings.

The group wanted to support developers already working in Dunedin by providing more information about available resources, through the council and other avenues, to support heritage building projects, he said.

Rates relief was available through the council's DCC Rates Relief for Development Policy, and a heritage fund for development projects, jointly administered by the council and NZHPT, he said.

• The Tuesday meeting will be held in Bracken Court, from 5pm to 7pm.

- chris.morris@odt.co.nz

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