Councillors to consider Lakeview site divvy-up

Jim Boult.
Jim Boult
Queenstown Lakes district councillors will consider whether to set aside most of the Lakeview site in community ownership at their meeting on Thursday.

Following community feedback, they will decide whether to retain 7.7 hectares, or about three-quarters, of the prime land, which overlooks Queenstown’s central business district.

Of the remaining 4.4ha of commercial land on the site, the recommended option is for 3.4ha — 2.7ha under freehold interest and 0.7ha under prepaid leasehold interest — to be made available for development in partnership with the private sector. 

Queenstown Lakes Mayor Jim Boult said he was comfortable that after 15 years of planning, strategies and reports, there was a "way forward" for the site.

"Sometimes we are in the unenviable position to make a decision that cannot meet everyone’s desires, but it is time to be decisive about delivering a quality outcome for Lakeview and for the community."

Councillors would have to balance the desire by many in the community to keep the land for future generations, and the council’s goal of creating a mixed-use precinct that complemented and enhanced the town centre.

The "lion’s share" of the site would be retained, notably the Lynch Block, on which 48 existing cabins contributed to the town centre’s housing stock.

The council would consider a compromise solution on the remainder of the site, with the area previously earmarked for a convention centre and to adjoin the proposed Ngai Tahu Hot Pools to be retained through prepaid lease tenure.

The council was committed to developing public space on the site, with $8.5million already budgeted for roads, a market square, parks, and pedestrian and cycle zones, Mr Boult said.

The council would also be asked to approve a recommendation to set aside 5% of the value of the land, or $2million-$3million, as an affordable-housing contribution.

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