Ladies Mile options on council table

Ladies Mile, near Queenstown. Photo Tracey Roxburgh
Ladies Mile, near Queenstown. Photo Tracey Roxburgh
Potential options for developing Ladies Mile, near Queenstown, will be discussed by the Queenstown Lakes District Council on Friday.

The council is considering whether to amend its Special Housing Area lead policy to incorporate the land on both sides of State Highway 6 - the recommended option before the council is for the area to be added to category 2 of the lead policy, meaning the council would be ''willing'' to consider SHA applications on that land.

If that was approved, it would pave the way for an SHA application later this year.

The only SHA which has been approved at Ladies Mile to date is the Queenstown Country Club, which is under development.

Council chief executive Mike Theelen said the council recognised it was an ''area of significance'' to many local residents, often seen as the gateway to Queenstown.

"As such it will seek public feedback on the proposal and this will be provided to council before a final decision is made."

That decision was expected to be made at the full council meeting on August 17.

Mr Theelen said under present growth predictions there needed to be an additional 9158 dwellings in the district by 2028 - that would rise to 17,462 dwellings by 2048.

Housing affordability and increasing population meant the council needed to consider any viable option that presented itself for development.

"Through the Housing Accord agreed with Central Government, council has to consider all opportunities that present as potential housing stock.

"Growth predictions show he need to plan for an almost doubling of the number of existing residential units in Queenstown and Wanaka over the next 30 years.

"A key question arises as to where they will be serviced, and Ladies Mile has been raised as a place of interest for future development."

Including Ladies Mile in the lead policy would enable master planning which could consider things like housing density, "community heart facilities", infrastructure and traffic management.

It was well placed to accommodate urban development given it was beside existing subdivisions of Lake Hayes Estate and Shotover Country, as well as the Queenstown Country Club.

It was also close to Frankton and had good transport links.

Mr Theelen said the council believed any development could be done ''sensitively''.

"Any plan to develop Ladies Mile would ensure that dwellings would be set back from the roadside by a minimum of 75m, with green space between that and the road ensuring this area retains a high level of amenity.

"By including Ladies Mile in to category 2 of QLDC's Special Housing Area Lead Policy, council has the ability to ensure development proceeds in a responsible manner and can require developers to follow an indicative master plan.

"It also allows for development to proceed at a faster rate, if the SHA is approved by the Housing Minister.''

Any housing would be expected to be of medium to high density and developed to optimise open spaces, ensure a community focus and encourage public transport.

Friday's council meeting would begin at the QLDC chambers, on Gorge Rd, at 8am, with public forum.

The early start was to accommodate Queenstown Winter Festival commitments.

- tracey.roxburgh@odt.co.nz

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