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As reported in The Star, a fence - built by Government agency Land Information New Zealand (LINZ) between the former Corstorphine School and a neighbouring community centre during the Easter holidays - has became a ''hot point'' for locals.
The wall blocks walking routes that have been used by residents for years. LINZ said it would not put a gate in the fence because public access through the school was only ever an ''informal arrangement'' and the paths were not registered easements. The school is now owned by LA Milton Ltd according to Dunedin City Council rates information.
Last weekend, South Dunedin Labour MP Clare Curran sent a letter about the wall to about 300 Corstorphine locals, calling for expressions of interest in a public meeting. There had been about 12 responses so far and a meeting was likely to occur some time in the next two weeks if there was enough community interest, she said.
The fence was on Crown land that remained unsold but ownership of the fence was a ''grey area'', Ms Curran said.
''LINZ claims that the fence provides protection to users of the MoE [Ministry of Education] land from any development that may be undertaken on the adjacent land in the future.
''The child-care centre, which is allegedly being protected, was not aware of the fence construction and did not ask for it,'' she said. Ms Curran said she was disturbed by the ''apparently mindless placement of the obstacle''.
''It's really about negotiation. The DCC is working to find a solution ... but these things go on behind closed doors,'' she said.
''The community needs to know what is happening because they are the ones being put out.''
Ms Curran would invite key stakeholders including the Ministry of Education, LINZ, Ngai Tahu, the council, and the developer to the meeting.
Spokesman for the developer Pat Cummings said he would be happy to attend a meeting but the best contact for comment would be the Dunedin City Council.
Dunedin City Council chief executive Sue Bidrose could not be contacted yesterday.