April consent hearing for tennis academy

An artist's impression shows Bridesdale Farm Developments Ltd's proposed Winton Tennis Academy,...
An artist's impression shows Bridesdale Farm Developments Ltd's proposed Winton Tennis Academy, mooted for land within the special housing area in Queenstown. IMAGE: SUPPLIED
A proposed tennis academy in a Queenstown special housing area will go before independent commissioners in April.

Bridesdale Farm Developments Ltd's resource consent application for the Winton Tennis Academy was publicly notified last October and attracted 35 submissions: 25 in opposition and 10 in support.

The proposal is scheduled to go before independent commissioners in Queenstown on April 4 and 5.

The company, whose directors are Chris and Michaela Meehan, propose to construct eight courts, two of which would be indoor, or covered, the application said.

The academy would be operated as a "philanthropic venture" and have between four and eight students the first year, growing to 16 school-age students within two years.

"The intention is that students will graduate from the academy to gain scholarships to off-shore universities."

The tennis centre was proposed within the lower Kawarau River terrace on Hayes Creek Rd, which was in the flood plane of the river, zoned rural general and was within the outstanding natural landscape classification.

The two indoor/covered courts would be on the south of the site. The eastern side of one court and western side of the other would have "a double height stack of shipping containers" as walls, which would have a variety of uses.

"The lower level will be limited to storage and accessible toilet use ... whilst the upper level of the containers will be modified to include a kitchenette, exercise equipment, meeting area, change rooms and further toilet area.

"The containers will also be modified to provide an elevated viewing area, by removing part of the internal wall of these structures."

The outdoor courts would be aligned north-south, using a "plexi-pave surface", and would be separated or edged by 2m-high hedging.

Grassed mounds would be established around the perimeter of the courts for spectators to watch games and the western-most mound would also include stacked-stone schist walls providing more formal benched seating.

A central gathering site would include two steel shade structures, which would also provide seating.

The application said the academy would operate between 6am and 10pm daily, but would not operate continuously throughout the day.

Outdoor courts would be available for local residents to use free, two hours a day.

A total of 20 car parks are proposed - seven would be on an asphalt surface and the remainder on a gravel overflow parking area beside the main entrance.

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