Cromwell development plan less intense

Land forming part of a controversial Cromwell subdivision is likely to get resource consent for residential development but in a radically different format.

The five-lot application falls short of River Terrace Developments Ltd’s original plan, which now rests on an Environment Court decision.

The resource consent application was the subject of a Commissioner Hearing before independent commissioner Gary Rae in Cromwell yesterday and relied on the original zoning plan of the land on Sandflat Rd, Cromwell.

The land was part of the proposed plan change 13 to rezone 50ha to provide for up to 900 residential units, which was was declined by commissioners in November. That decision was appealed by the developer on Monday.

However, the requested plan change had no bearing on the application presented yesterday.

Lawyer for River Terrace Developments Warwick Goldsmith said the application was to subdivide a single lot totalling almost 37ha into five separate lots for rural living purposes.

The land in question is zoned as rural residential, required controlled activity consent and "consent cannot be refused", he said.

"The only issue for debate is the appropriate consent conditions."

The application was to realise the value of the land under its rural residential status and to create records of title for the lots, Mr Goldsmith said.

Submitters against consent being granted included Highlands Motorsport Park and Central Cromwell Speedway Club.

Both parties are concerned about the impact complaints from potential residents across Sandflat Rd from the speedway would have on their operations and say the land is not suitable for development due to noise generated by the speedway.

Lawyers Derek McLachlin and Kate Scott, representing both, presented their submissions based on the application at the centre of the hearing and the fact an additional application for a 17-lot subdivision had been made.

However, Mr Goldsmith withdrew that application.

Independent planning consultant David Whitney, acting on behalf of the Central Otago District Council, said the application had to be accepted by law but it was "not the best planning decision".

Mr Rae adjourned the hearing to allow the lawyers revise their submissions and clarified: "The only application on the table is this one. It’s been an interesting hearing, that’s for sure."

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