Council buys reserve land

The Waitaki District Council has bought 7.9578ha on the Hospital Hill reserve, giving Oamaru more reserve land, extended linked walking tracks and more land for residential development.

The council signed an agreement last week to buy the land from Ngai Tahu Property Ltd for $660,000 plus GST from endowment funds.

Before 2002, the site was administered by the council for the Department of Conservation.

In 2002, the council began negotiations with Doc to revoke the reserve status on the property so it could be freed up for future residential development.

The Crown, as the underlying owner of the land, had a statutory obligation to offer the land to Ngai Tahu and the council entered negotiations with both Doc and Ngai Tahu for the land purchase.

The council owned freehold title to 6.16ha between that site and the former Oamaru Hospital site, but that had no access to public roading, property committee chairman Cr Peter Twiss said.

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