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Project Manawa recommendation to be considered – QLDC

Queenstown Lakes District Councillors will be asked to consider a hearings panel recommendation on next steps for Project Manawa at its meeting on 4 April.

The hearings panel recommendation follows formal consultation on foundational first steps for the project which occurred for six weeks during November/ December 2023. 178 submissions were received.

Queenstown Lakes District Council (QLDC) Strategic Projects Manager Paul Speedy said most submitters expressed general opposition to Project Manawa.

“Many of the submissions didn’t address the specific topics being consulted on but some important key themes came through. These included concerns about the location of a proposed Council office, impacts on traffic and parking, the need for further consultation on the location or the need for such facilities, the cost to ratepayers, lack of information on the proposed joint venture arrangement, and whether a project of this nature was a priority compared with other infrastructure projects,” he said.

“There was general support for a ‘one office’ solution for QLDC and acknowledgement that the Stanley Street site is an important asset for the community with the potential to support a vibrant town centre,” he said.

27 submitters spoke at a hearing on 19 February 2023. The hearing panel was made up of Councillor Lyal Cocks (chair), and Councillors Melissa White and Craig (Ferg) Ferguson. Its recommendation seeks to address the concerns raised through the consultation period.

In summary, the hearing panel recommendations include:

– Proceeding with Option 1 for the proposed land exchange to optimise the potential opportunities for the site. This enables a whole of precinct solution that preserves reserve land around the historically important Ballarat Street axis, central to the site, and unlocks more freehold land for future development and/or revenue-generation opportunities.

– That a review is completed on the location and ownership of the proposed Council office, providing greater detail on why the Stanley Street site was identified as the preferred location, for comparison with an alternative site in Frankton. The recommendation also outlines that a proposal be developed for further consultation with the community on these matters.

– That negotiations on the proposal for a joint venture partnership with Ngāi Tahu Property should not proceed until the above review is complete, subject to further consideration and approval by the Council.

– Unlocking additional carparking on the Stanley Street site in the medium term.

The recommendation will be considered by full Council at a public meeting on 4 April at the Council Chambers, 10 Gorge Road, Queenstown from 2.00pm. It will also be livestreamed on the Council’s Facebook page.

 

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