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Mt Iron Junction Ltd co-owner Stephen Schikker confirmed yesterday he was in mediation with the Queenstown Lakes District Council over his company’s development proposal, and he said he could see "light at the end of the tunnel".
The company wants to spend $20-$30million building a service station, workers’ accommodation, terrace housing, a child care centre and a mini golf facility on a 5.8ha triangular allotment bounded by State Highway 84 to the south and SH6 to the east.
The development would also enable the New Zealand Transport Agency to create a $4million roundabout at what is considered to be one of the Upper Clutha’s most dangerous intersections.
However, after a hearing in February, the company’s proposal was declined because the land is zoned rural general, and independent commissioners considered the landscape changes would be more than minor.
Mr Schikker said mediation had been completed and "we are working out the conditions of consent."
"I think there’s light at the end of the tunnel.
"The frustrating thing is that it is one of the very few developments that has a very strong public support. It is just the underlying zone issue that we’re struggling with."
The council’s planning and strategy committee is due to be updated on the matter at its meeting tomorrow, in the public excluded part of the meeting. Mr Schikker described the land as a "wasteland" and an "eyesore".
"As locals, we want a really good result and we think our plan will create that.
"It’s just a matter of working through it with the council."