Stadium rezoning process to start

The process of rezoning land at Awatea St to allow for the construction of a stadium begins today.

The Carisbrook Stadium Trust will brief Dunedin city councillors on its request for a private plan change for the 7ha of industrial land.

The matter will then be debated at an extraordinary meeting of the planning and environment committee on April 22.

Committee chairman Cr Michael Guest believed the council would ‘‘probably embrace'' the requested plan change. ‘‘We have to consider it as to whether it is important enough for the city to take it over as a plan change, which I think is likely.''

With the stadium proposal being partly recreational, partly commercial and partly educational, Cr Guest was uncertain of the zoning definition for the land if it changed its status from industrial.

He envisaged the area included in the plan change would be only that required for the stadium.

‘‘There is nothing controversial. It just simply is to allow a plan change to allow for a stadium.''

Cr Guest expected the request would be heard by independent commissioners instead of the council's standing hearings committee, which is comprised of city councillors.

He believed that plan change could be done in less than two years.

‘‘I will be ensuring that the planning department of the city council will be moving with all speed on it,'' Cr Guest said.

If there was an appeal to the Environment Court, he said he would request it be ‘‘treated with urgency''.

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