Press Releases

Wanaka Sports Facilities

No decisions will be taken on the future of sports facilities in Wanaka without extensive consultation with the Wanaka community.

"We now have the sign-off from the Wanaka Community Board and the Queenstown Lakes District Council to get on with the consultation needed before we can front up with a plan and a budget for inclusion in the 2009 Council Community Plan," Upper Clutha Sports Facilities chairman Mike Saunders said.

The next step for the working party included the generation of a discussion document on the options, together with a preferred option, for a full round of consultation with the community.

"A lot of excellent work has already been undertaken but we now need to turn that into a formal and thorough statutory process in order to get a result for our community," Mr Saunders said.

Information sessions, a submission process and possibly a hearing were all scheduled to take place before November.

"It's absolutely critical that the Wanaka community and anyone that may feel affected by the proposal gets involved in this process, from out-of town ratepayers, to locally living members of the community to Wanaka holiday-makers," he said.

The consultation material would be made widely available through the council and its communications tools, including the website. "There is no reason for anyone to feel they cannot have a voice in this process," Mr Saunders said.

The discussion document would focus on a range of options for the location of a sports facility that would meet the community?s needs over the medium-long term.  It would also explore possible synergies with the proposed aquatic centre and a proposed arts/community centre.

"It's important that the process is thorough and the work that has already been undertaken places us in a good position to expedite what can be and still could be a long and drawn out process," Mr Saunders said.

He was confident given the agreed schedule and the council's recent appointment of Wanaka man Nick Brown to project manage the process that the working party could meet the CCP deadline.  "It's entirely achievable," Mr Saunders said.

A lot of work was now underway to reach the next milestone of releasing a discussion document for consultation with the community in June/July.

ENDS

For further information please contact Mike Saunders. Ph 03 443 8168