Opposition to proposed business in Traders Lane

A proposal to operate a retail shop selling snow equipment, wakeboards and skates, as well as associated apparel, footwear and accessories, in Cromwell has drawn opposition from Central Otago District Council planning consultant David Whitney.

He recommended the application be denied resource consent in his report to the council's hearings panel, discussed at a meeting in Alexandra this week.

Mr Whitney said the proposed 95sq m retail activity exceeded 50sq m, or 10% of the total building area, and was therefore a discretionary activity because it breached the council's rules for retail operation in an industrial resource area.

He also said the four parking spaces sought in the application were "substantially greater" than the council's district plan allocated according to size of the corresponding industrial or retail activity.

"The activity will utilise 7.8% of the parking spaces that have been provided on site for the Traders Lane complex, while the shop will cover 1.8% of the complex. In essence, less parking will be available to future tenants of other units on site.

"This is likely to result in additional demand for on-street parking, adversely affecting the safe and efficient operation of the roading network. This effect will be exacerbated if the parking restriction is applied adjacent to site at McNulty Rd, as recommended in the Opus report for Traders Lane," Mr Whitney said.

No submissions were received on the proposal, which was not notified.

Affected persons' approval forms were signed by five businesses within the neighbouring industrial area.

Mr Whitney said the proposal would have an adverse effect in terms of the convenience of the community of Cromwell, as it was outside the town's business area, including the Mall.

The proposed site within the Traders Lane complex fronts on to McNulty Rd and Wolter Cres.

Operating hours of the shop would be 9am to 5pm Monday to Friday, and 11am to 4pm at weekends.

In her written report, applicant Kerry McHardie, director of On Edge Snow, Skate, Wake Ltd, advised the council hours could vary according to popularity of the shop.

The applicant's planning consultant, Nicola Scott, said there were no available spaces within Cromwell's business area for the shop, and it was not possible for the applicant to construct her own property.

"This application is reasonable, and is born largely from a lack of available suitable locations within Cromwell's existing business area."

Ms Scott said the business' main income would come from a workshop set up to repair or maintain wakeboards, snowboards, skis and skateboards.

When asked by the panel if the business would establish a precedent for further discretionary activities in the area, she pointed out there were already many businesses in Cromwell's industrial area which had a part or whole retail component.

"There are now to be more car parks within Traders Lane, and we also wish to reduce the number of our car parks to two or three so as to reduce any restriction of future clients within the complex," Ms Scott said.

The hearings panel reserved its decision, which is expected to be released within 15 working days.

 

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