Pop-up bar may fill gap in city

A new container bar proposed for Invercargill will help to create a "food and beverage precinct" for the city centre.

The Invercargill Licensing Trust  has proposed a container bar for Wachner Pl during CBD redevelopments, and has asked the Invercargill City Council to consider leasing part of its land.

A report, which will come before a full council meeting on Tuesday, suggested the trust needed to vacate two of its establishments, The Kiln and Bar Luca, when development commences on its  new inner city hotel.

The establishments closing would "reduce choice in the inner city" and the container bar would provide an interim solution, the report read.

Invercargill Licensing chief executive Chris Ramsay said a container bar was an "exciting opportunity" for the city while it was undergoing change.

"We’re keen to activate and make use of a space that’s gong to be front and centre as our CBD changes and evolves," Mr Ramsay  said.

A food and beverage precinct would be "developed naturally" in the area, he said.

"You’ve got the Tuatara Cafe there, The Speights Ale House and Waxy’s all within throwing distance, and then around the corner on Don St, there’s Auction House, so it’s a good hub," he said.

It was possible to negotiate a development which would "conform with a range of requirements", including keeping unimpeded access to the footpath in Wachner Pl, and free access to public toilets, the report read.

While the licensing trust  was in the "very early stages" of the plan, there were "fairly positive" vibes from council executives about the project, Mr Ramsay said.

- Sharon Reece

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