8 Sep 2012

Plans for Dunedin hotel open for public submissions

7:48 am on 8 September 2012

A controversial 27-storey hotel on the Dunedin waterfront is a step closer to being built.

The hotel will have 215 bedrooms, two restaurants, two bars, a swimming pool and 182 on-site parking spaces.

The resource consent application for the $100 million venture filed by Betterways Advisory Ltd is now out for consultation. Public submissions on the plans close on 5 October.

When plans were announced in May, opponents said the building was too tall and out of place with the character of Wharf Street.

One opponent, Peter Entwisle, says the hotel doesn't fit with surrounding buildings which are predominantly of New Zealand's colonial era.

"It introduces a completely a completely contrasting and conflicting element and it destroys the impression that you're still in the colonial city."

There are some concerns about its safety in an earthquake as Wharf Street - where the hotel would be built - is reclaimed land.

But Dunedin mayor David Cull says the the city has been in need of high quality accommodation for some time.

"Most people are feeling positive about the fact that an investor from outside the city - in fact outside the country as I understand it - is prepared to see the potential in Dunedin and invest here.

Betterways Advisory Ltd has not named the developers though its company website says it promotes cooperation and commerce between China and New Zealand.