Property redevelopment plans progressing

Million-dollar plans to redevelop Lake Tekapo township are back on the agenda, after a group charged with overseeing the redevelopment was reappointed this week.

The Tekapo Property Group, which is working on plans to redevelop a 1.2ha land section between the town's retail centre and the lake edge, reconvened on Tuesday when six new members were appointed at a meeting of the Mackenzie District Council.

Before the committee was disestablished prior to October's local elections, there was one member from outside local government, and although those appointed on Tuesday were either council staff members or councillors, fellow group member Mackenzie Mayor Claire Barlow said further appointments were expected.

''We will be making appointments to the committee from outside the organisation, but because it is a subcommittee of our finance committee, that will be done by the finance committee.''

In addition to Mrs Barlow, the Tekapo Property Group now includes deputy mayor Graham Smith, Cr Murray Cox and Cr Russell Armstrong, as well as council chief executive Wayne Barnett and council finance manager Paul Morris.

Mrs Barlow said she was keen to ensure the public was kept up to date with the redevelopment. She said it was ''absolutely our intention'' to let people know what was happening once ''some solid information'' was available.

However, information had to be ''100%'' accurate.

''It has been a very protracted process, because it depends on surveys, with resource consents ... it has taken longer than I had expected.

''Public consultation is very important to me, but it is really important to look at some sort of strategy to see how we can keep people in the loop. It's definitely not our desire to do any behind-closed-doors deals at all.''

The planned project is expected to bring the council about $1 million through the sale of a 1.2ha section of debt-free council-owned land and would create a new village green, new hospitality and retail areas and provide better pedestrian access to the Lake Tekapo foreshore.

The council agreed in April to put aside $160,000 (plus contingencies) to prepare a subdivision consent for the plans, but council finance manager Paul Morris said subdivision plans were ongoing.

Sections could not be sold until consent was attained and the subdivision process was able to start, he said.


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