Waiting for word on waterfront

A waterfront development and a new hospital are just two of the projects which could transform...
Architecture Van Brandenburg's proposal for development of the Steamer Basin area. Image: Animation Research
A decision on Dunedin's bid for a major slice of the Provincial Growth Fund (PGF), to help pay for the city's waterfront development plan, is now not expected until later this year, the Dunedin City Council says.

Sue Bidrose
Sue Bidrose
It had been hoped an announcement might be made as early as this month, once officials had assessed the project and made a recommendation to Cabinet for a final decision.

However, council chief executive Sue Bidrose said on Friday officials were still assessing the city's funding request.

The parties were now expected to meet face-to-face later this month, so Dunedin's representatives could run PGF officials through the business case underpinning the waterfront development in person, she said.

"It's a complex business case so that's what we're going to do," she said.

After that, a report would go to the PGF's independent advisory panel, possibly as soon as April, followed by a recommendation to Cabinet, she said.

A final decision would then be made by Cabinet, but exactly how soon that could happen was not yet known.

A spokesman for the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment's provincial development unit could not say when a final decision was likely.

That would depend in part on whether officials needed to ask the council or other parties for further information.

"It's really impossible to say," he said.

Officials were "acutely aware" of the significance of the project to Dunedin, but needed to treat the application with the upmost rigour given the sums of money being sought, he said.

"We are working closely with the council to progress it. We do need to make sure we get this process right."

It was previously reported Dunedin was seeking $50million or more to pay for improvements to sea walls, earthworks and other work needed to ready the area for development.


No free lunches. Central government money for cycleways came with a big price tag, so does this. At the very least, the lure of ‘free money’ makes for rushed decisions. The waterfront project might contribute to ‘regional development’ only briefly by giving work to construction companies and in the long term leaving Dunedin ratepayers having to pay maintenance costs for a ‘bridge to nowhere’ because the waterfront area is so cold and windy.

I fear the bridge is just the tip of the iceberg as far as ratepayers money goes. Still it might prove to be good value if private investors are lining up. Can the local councils please tell us how much money has been spent on this poject so far including man hours, for meetings, promotion, reports, marketing, consultations, consultants, lawerys and retail space. Also how many private investors do they have interested and how much money are they pledging to invest?

It's a complex business steam rollering through a major development with no ratepayer consultation.

This council needs to go!

"It's a complex business case so that's what we're going to do,"
Meaning dragging it out for as long as possible, making the most of the free lunches and paying themselves a healthy pay packet to boot.

If this goes through and I hope it doesn't for the future of Dunedin rate payers. because the Council has time and time again highlighted that they can not plan. manage basic things, this is another major project along with the hospital rebuild. I think this will end up like the hotels and tourist resorts in the Sinai Peninsula they built amazing hotels hoping people would come, they didn't which resulted in empty hotels, pools and debit. @ Pat above^ yeah right they will not have a clue and if you are told it will be plucked figures