18 Apr 2010

Plans revived for Wellington waterfront

9:55 am on 18 April 2010

Plans for commercial development at a Wellington waterfront park are back on the City Council's agenda now the economy is showing signs of recovery.

A draft plan to go out for public consultation includes feasibility studies for two large buildings in Waitangi Park, including apartments with shops and cafes at ground floor level.

Some councillors oppose the plans and say they were previously assured the project was on hold for five years.

Councillor Iona Pannett was one of three who voted against against the plan and says she's worried about the loss of public access to prime waterfront sites.

She says she's also concerned about the costs of the projects, which are largely unknown.

Councillor Helene Ritchie also opposes the plan, which she says has changed significantly from what was put before the public just five months ago.

She says assurances were previously given that project was on hold for five years.

But mayor Kerry Prendergast says it often takes a few years for development plans to come to fruition, so it makes sense to start now.

She says it is up the public to say what they think of the plan, which includes interim uses like an ice-skating rink and a semi-permanent marquee.