Future uncertain but paint job likely

The $1 billion Kawarau Falls Station development, pictured yesterday. Photo by Naeem Alvi.
The $1 billion Kawarau Falls Station development, pictured yesterday. Photo by Naeem Alvi.
The future of stages two and three of the troubled $1 billion Kawarau Falls Station development at Queenstown is still a mystery, but repainting all five buildings in stage one in less reflective paint is likely to happen from 2016.

Melview (Kawarau Falls Station) Developments is seeking permission to change a single condition in the original resource management plan, after painting stage one - soon to be the luxury Hilton Queenstown - in a paint colour that was too reflective.

Some parts of the stage one buildings are painted white, which can have a reflectivity value up to 80%. The Queenstown Lakes District Council reflectivity guide says paint colours with a reflectivity value above 35% are not appropriate for the district.

In a bid to comply with condition 36 of the original land-use consent and meet the conditions of the council's reflectivity guide, the application sought to vary the consent so the buildings could be progressively repainted to have a reflectivity value of 35% or less.

Melview Developments, which went into receivership in May 2010, declined to comment on the application yesterday but KordaMentha receiver Grant Graham said the change in the plan was "nothing major".

"While the council is fantastic, on a project of this size there are a lot of processes you have to go through - we're just ticking all the right boxes."

He said there were some "slight" colour changes from the original plan and the issue was being addressed.

Repainting the five buildings in stage one would begin in 2016 and finish in 2021, with one building painted each year.

Originally, Kawarau Falls Station was planned as a 6.4ha resort village of four hotels, 1100 units and 13 major buildings, boulevard-style streets, restaurants and parks, and was expected to be completed this year. Mr Graham said the future of the delayed stage two and three developments was still uncertain.

"We don't really have any contact with stage two or three, but what I can say is we can expect to be in a position to do certain landscaping to enhance stage one."

He said there was potential to overlap stage one with the delayed stage two and three developments, but details had not yet been finalised.

"The original plan had a conference centre and more hotels, but who knows what will go ahead, post the September financial crises?"Stages two and three were placed into receivership in early March 2010.

Stage two and three receivers Tim Downes and Richard Simpson, of Grant Thornton Ltd, could not be reached for comment.

However, the November 2010 receivers' report for the company behind both stages, Peninsula Road Ltd, said $43,454,369 was owed to Fortress and $83,398,308 to Allied Farmers Investment Ltd. An unknown amount is owed to BOS International (Australia) Ltd.

To date, payments of $1.55 million had been made to secured creditors, the report said.

- naeem.alvi@odt.co.nz


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