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Statement re proposed five star hotel development in Dunedin

DCC statement re proposed hotel development

The Dunedin City Council welcomes a proposal to build a five star hotel on the Filleul Street car park.

DCC Chief Executive Officer Dr Sue Bidrose says staff have been working with NZ Horizon Hospitality Group Proprietary Limited to provide advice and support where appropriate, since the developer approached the DCC with an offer to purchase the land.

“The Council has been clear for some time it would welcome a five star hotel in the city. It would complement the great facilities and services Dunedin can provide and bring economic benefits.

“The proposed site is a great location for a five star hotel, with its proximity to the Dunedin Centre’s first class conference facilities and our vibrant city centre.”

The Council and the company have signed a Memorandum of Understanding which means the company has an exclusive interest over the car park site for three months. This is to allow for a due diligence process, including obtaining geotechnical data about grounds conditions at the car park.

The DCC owns the Filleul Street car park, which offers a mix of public and leased parking.

DCC Property Manager Kevin Taylor says the DCC has contracted a geotechnical engineer to provide an investigation assessment report on the sub-surface conditions. This will involve testing and sampling of the land, involving drilling and, depending on the results, test pits.

This means heavy machinery, such as a drilling rig, will be on site initially and later possibly an excavator and related machinery. The drilling rig will be on site for up to three weeks from 10 October. There will be 7-8 sonic bore holes, including two holes on the neighbouring York Place site. The core samples taken will then be sent for analysis. Three piezometers will be installed to enable groundwater levels to be monitored.

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Mr Taylor says efforts will be made to keep the car park open, but a short closure is likely depending on the location of the bore holes. Drilling will take place on specific mapped sections, meaning areas of the car park will be unavailable for several days at a time. Other parks will be made available for people who cannot use their leased car parks. The mapping is not available at this time.

The geotechnical work and report is expected to cost about $50,000. As the DCC will own the report, the data could be used for other projects. Mr Taylor says the information will also be helpful when the DCC updates its seismic assessments of nearby DCC facilities, such as the City Library and Civic Centre.

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