Feedback received during Community Engagement
Thank you to everyone who took the time to provide feedback on the proposals within the Queenstown Town Centre Masterplan.
We were thrilled with the response from the community who overall are supportive of the vision for the future of our town centre.
We received feedback from 289 individuals and organisations via the online form and connected with the Queenstown community via a range of engagement events and pop up stalls.
- Feedback received via Online Form - Part 1
- Feedback received via Online Form - Part 2
- Feedback received via Online Form - Part 3
- Feedback emailed directly to Council
- Feedback received from groups
The feedback received covered a range of different themes and is being carefully considered as we progress the design of the projects.
We will provide an early response to the key themes here but it’s important to note that the process is ongoing. We are continuing to work closely with our investment partners and Central Government, and further work is also underway to refine the proposals and develop detailed business cases to provide a solid case for investment
Town Centre Arterials
There was a lot of general support for a town centre arterial route. Concerns were raised about pedestrian connections to the upper suburbs, whether the proposed route options were appropriate (with some suggestions received for alternatives) and provision for walkers and cyclists.
Queenstown Memorial Centre
A large amount of feedback was received on the proposal to align a future town centre arterial route through the existing Queenstown Memorial Centre site.
The conversation regarding this proposal is ongoing as we work through whether it is the most appropriate alignment for the road.
If it is determined through the detailed analysis already underway that a future town centre arterial is best placed through that site, we will determine how it will be replaced before any demolition is approved. If a replacement facility is required, it will be subject to further consultation with the user groups and wider community.
Walking and Cycling Connections
There were some concerns raised that the plan for a new arterial route focussed too heavily on the private vehicle and didn’t do enough to promote alternative ways to get around, like walking and cycling.
We have now done further work on the proposal and are considering a range of new shared pathways, improving the connections between the town centre and Fernhill, Lakeview and Queenstown Hill.
We will continue to work closely with those affected by the proposed town centre arterial route.
Overall, there was a lot of support received for a shift from on-street to off-street parking. As we consider the most appropriate locations, we are also looking at potential future use of these buildings. It’s likely that private vehicle use will decrease in the future as alternative transport modes become more convenient and attractive to commuters, so it’s important that any future parking building can be repurposed in years to come.
There were some concerns raised that local residents were not being adequately considered as part of the parking proposals. There isn’t a silver-bullet solution to our parking issues; it will take a mix of options to cater for a diverse range of people. Things like improved public transport, better management of existing car-parking facilities, smarter use of technology to reduce circulation, multiple new parking buildings, potential park & ride facilities and local behaviour change, will provide the tools we need to significantly improve the parking situation in Queenstown.
Further concerns were raised about ensuring the town centre remains accessible to those with mobility challenges. We couldn’t agree more. That’s why part of the vision for the town centre is that we achieve improved access for all locals and visitors and why any project put forward will be tested against this critical element.
There was a range of feedback for and against park & ride facilities. While this type of facility is not going to be the right fit for some, it will be an ideal solution for many others. It’s important to remember that we aren’t recommending a one size fits all approach, a park & ride is just part of a mix of tools to provide choice to our commuters and improve the current situation in the town centre.
Public and Passenger Transport
There was strong support for the improved public transport system and cheaper bus fares starting in November 2017. We also received a range of ideas for the types of public transport that could service the town in the future. We’ll continue to work with our partners on future public transport options and how they could potentially be supported via a public transport hub.
We received a significant amount of feedback on the idea to establish a community heart on the Stanley Street site. The community is at the heart of this proposal and the conversation about what this might look like and what might be included there, will be ongoing.
The Council is committed to working closely with all existing community groups using the site and the Government agencies that own the reserves to establish something special. Things will change but not at the expense of the community - in support of it.
To provide clarity, there was never a proposal to replace the playcentre with a Council office. The Queenstown Playcentre plays a hugely important role in supporting and providing a sense of community for our young families. The playcentre site formed part of the footprint for a ‘Community Heart’ and we will continue to work closely with the Ministry of Education on any future proposals for the site.
We received a lot of feedback regarding the location of a new combined Council office.
Back in February last year, the Council made the decision to retain a new Council office within the CBD. The new office will improve efficiencies between Council departments and indirectly support a range of other businesses and professionals that operate within the town centre. Importantly, the presence of civic and community buildings in town contribute to the authenticity of the area by keeping local people in town
We received a significant amount of support for increasing pedestrianisation and creating more beautiful spaces within the Queenstown Town Centre. You’ll start to see improvements in this area pretty quickly as we start work to activate the pedestrianised section of Beach Street.
Detailed business cases and further refinement of the projects is ongoing. You’ll hear more in October when the full Council considers the business cases and there will be further opportunity to get involved next March during the Ten Year Plan formal consultation process.
In the meantime, we’ll continue to keep you updated via the Facebook Page @QueenstownTownCentre or our monthly e-news.
Summary of Stage 1 Engagement – Ideas and Insights
Back in March we asked the Queenstown community what they cherished about the Queenstown Town Centre. But also what could be better; what needed to change to create a town centre they could be proud of.
We talked to a wide range of people and groups and got a fantastic response, which overall showed that we are on the same page - we share the frustrations you have but also relate to all of the things you love. Here's what you said:
Youth Engagement Session – 13 March
This session was attended by 49 year 12 and 13 Wakatipu High School Students. The students were surveyed on their travel choices and the factors that would encourage them to return to Queenstown to live after study or travel abroad.
Summary of Results
- 53% currently use a private motor vehicle as their main way to get to and from school and around town.
- 87% believe that a more efficient and cheaper public transport system will have a significant effect on traffic congestion in Queenstown.
- Scenery, outdoor opportunities and family connections rated highest as factors that would bring them back to Queenstown to live.
- 55% said housing choices and affordability would need to improve before they considered moving back.
Other themes that students feel need to change include:
- Traffic congestion
- Access to health care
- More community facilities
- Better job opportunities
- Alternative transport routes
- Better parking options
- Better education for tourist drivers
Wakatipu High School students brainstorming their ideas for a better Queenstown Town Centre.
Remarkables Market – 11 March
We spoke directly to 90 people at the Remarkables Market. 77% of the people we spoke to lived locally and 17% were visitors (6% unknown).
Generally, we had a lot of positive conversations about the town centre and the direction of Council. However it was widely felt that while the town isn’t spoiled yet, it’s not far away. Participants made comments about the following areas.
These are summarised at a high level below.
- Visitors felt the public transport system worked well
- Overall Locals would like to see a more efficient and cheaper system in place, servicing a wider area of town and with more travel options, ie Ferries/Park and Ride.
Getting around / Congestion
- Visitors felt congestion was becoming an issue
- Locals find it difficult to get into and around town and avoid it if possible.
- Not enough housing and too expensive.
- Locals find it difficult and expensive to park in the Town Centre
- Support for a parking building on the outskirts of town
- Locals supportive of removing cars from the town centre and implementing more pedestrianised streets.
- Support for more areas people can gather/run markets and local business or events.
- Tighter public drinking rules in the town centre
- Support for community facilities to be in town (library/arts centre etc)
- More cultural activities in town
- Love the boutique and compact feel of the town centre
- Growth related infrastructure issues need dealt with before town is spoiled
A range of general ideas were also contributed:
- footpath from kelvin heights
- tourist tax
- Better breastfeeding facilities
- More co-working opportunities
- Creating a more environmentally friendly brand
- Higher rates for overseas owners
- Keep campervans out of town. Provide better facilities for them on the outskirts of town and viable options for them to get into town.
136 people (90% local) completed our online survey which asked people to describe what they cherish about the town centre, what could be better and what experiences they expect out of a good town centre.
Of the 136 respondents, 68 signed up to receive regular email updates on the project.
What do people love
The following word cloud shows the most common things respondents cherish about the Queenstown Town Centre.
What do people think could be better
The most commonly mentioned themes include:
- More Parking options for long and short term stays (65% of respondents said their main problem with the town centre is lack of parking options).
- Traffic congestion getting into and around the town centre (57% of respondents said traffic congestion heading into and around town was an issue).
- Prioritising people over vehicles in the town centre (21% of respondents sought more pedestrianisation within the town centre).
- Cheaper and more efficient public transport options, including a ferry service (23% of respondents commented on public transport and suggested a ferry service).
- Wider selection of shops, moving away from non-essential chain stores and booking agents (22% of respondents commented on the types of shops available).
- Safer options for cyclists and more ‘bike friendly’ facilities available (20% of respondents feel it’s unsafe to cycle around the town centre and would like to see better facilities available).
- More attractive streetscaping (23% of respondents commented on the streetscape, generally feeling that the area needed tidied up).
- More rubbish and recycling bins which are more regularly emptied and cleaned, particularly early morning. (15% of respondents commented on the number of bins available in the town centre and the need for better waste management systems).
- A venue for performing arts (7% of respondents felt that performing arts needed a boost).
Other areas raised:
- Less crowds
- More historical preservation and signage
- Better community and civic facilities
- More street art
- A welcome to Queenstown sign
- Better family friendly facilities
- Better maintenance of facilities
- Better use of rooftop spaces
- Better use of laneways
- Better wayfinding signage
- More outdoor dining
- Less buskers using amplified music
Overall, these are the things respondents expect out of a good town centre:
The top ten highest ranking expectations are:
• Good Access to and around the town centre for all users (50% of respondents commented on their expectation for good accessibility to and around the town centre).
• A diverse range of shopping, dining experiences and opportunities to socialise (33% of respondents commented that they expected a more diverse range of local shops and restaurants).
• Safe and Clean (18% of respondents expect safe and clean streets).
• Less cars in town / pedestrianisation of more CBD streets (24% of respondents expect prioritisation of pedestrians in the CBD).
• A good range of parking options (27% expect a good range of parking options, within walking distance of the CBD).
• A boutique or quirky feel to the design of the town centre (9% of respondents expect a boutique and charming vibe).
• Vibrancy and cultural diversity (21% of respondents expect a more vibrant and cultural diverse town centre)
• Gathering spaces for markets, community events etc (11% expect more community gathering spaces for markets and local business).
• Attractive and well maintained (7% expect attractive and well maintained streets and facilities).
• Hassle Free (7% expect a hassle-free environment).
Other expectations included:
- Public Transport hub
- A range of cheap things to do for families/more community events
- Dedicated arts facilities
- Promotion of local heritage
- Good facilities at Queenstown Gardens
- A wide range of accommodation options
- Good connections with the lake
- Co-working spaces
- More public art
- More police presence at night.
- More public toilets
- Happy people