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There are fears the gridlock could be " a sign of things to come".
Tempers flared on Saturday as traffic ground to a halt along Brownston and Ardmore Sts, and past the roundabout heading towards State Highway 8A.
Queenstown Lakes District deputy mayor Calum MacLeod had a theory on how the issue arose.
"That is why we ended up with gridlock, but literally 10 minutes later, the traffic was flowing freely," he said.
Traffic congestion and parking are perennial issues in Wanaka and with the town’s predicted growth there are fears Saturday’s gridlock could be repeated.
"I totally agree it was a sign of things to come and that is why the council is developing a long-term transport strategy ... but in the short term we are looking at a number of options, such as park and ride," Cr MacLeod said.
He said park and ride had proved successful at the last A&P show and with the Motatapu Race, the A&P show and the national rodeo finals all on the same weekend on March 9, 10 and 11, he expected the take-up to be even better.