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Council to Consider Future Development of Lakeview

QLDC Media Release: Council to Consider Future Development of Lakeview
20 October 2017. For immediate release.

On the back of community feedback the Council will be asked to consider a mixed solution to the future development of the Lakeview site. Importantly the Council has asked that the recommendation set aside 7.7 hectares or 74% of the site to be retained in community ownership.

The Council consulted with the community on the matter of tenure (prepaid leasehold or freehold) for the potential sale of 4.4 hectares of commercial land from a total of 10.4 hectares of land on the Lakeview site. The recommended option is a mixed solution which sees 3.4 hectares (2.7 hectares under freehold interest and 0.7 hectares under prepaid leasehold interest) of the commercial land to be made available for development in partnership with the private sector.

“There are a number of elements that need to be satisfied by the decision we take on this strategic site and I am comfortable that after at least 15 years of consideration, planning, strategies and reports into the future use of this land, including recent investment to enable intensification of activities on the site, we have a way forward,” Queenstown Lakes District Council Mayor Jim Boult said.

Key considerations in main lay around some desire in the community to retain the land for future generations, a financial driver for Council to offset an unprecedented work programme to meet the growth challenge and Council’s explicit set of objectives for the site. These include creating a thriving mixed use precinct that complements and enhances the Queenstown Town Centre, with a variety of housing outcomes.

“Strong market engagement via a two staged approach, commencing with a request for expressions of interest seeking development partners, with an intention to shortlist followed by a formal request for proposals, will enable this Council to ensure that our objectives are met,” Mr Boult said.
There could be significant comfort to the community given the lion share of the site would be retained, including the Lynch Block which contained an existing and significant contribution to the delivery of housing options within Queenstown at present. “We want to set that to one side for future consideration,” he said. In the interim the Lynch block could continue to add to the Queenstown central housing stock with 48 cabins on the land.

The recommendation before the Council on Thursday will further seek a compromised solution on the remainder of the land with the premier site (previously earmarked for a Convention Centre) and adjoining the proposed Ngai Tahu Hot Pools (lease) proposal to be retained for future generations through prepaid lease tenure. A smaller adjacent site would also be offered as prepaid lease with the remainder of the lots to be offered up as freehold.

“Sometimes we are in the unenviable position to make a decision that cannot meet everyone’s desires but it is time to be decisive about delivering a quality outcome for Lakeview and for the community,” Mayor Boult said.

For the Council’s part it was committed to invest in the development of public space on the site with $8.5 million already budgeted for quality roads, a market square, parks, and pedestrian/cycle zones. In addition to this the Council would be asked to approve a recommendation to set aside 5% of the value of the land for the purposes of an affordable housing contribution, which could be in the order of $2 to $3 million.

Mr Boult was conscious that there may be some argument that Council should consider a higher contribution. “Unlike a developer we do not get to bank profit, these are community funds that are required to offset our significant work programme.”

“The community value that will be realised through the addition of some freehold sales in combination with prepaid lease is significant. I think that we will have before us a recommendation that delivers the right balance between financial and non-financial objectives.”


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