QLDC to close large CBD car park
"The Ballarat Street Carpark, on the corner of Ballarat and Stanley Streets, is set to close from Monday 2 August to support the construction of the first stage of the Queenstown Town Centre Arterial road.
Queenstown Lakes District Council General Manager Property and Infrastructure Peter Hansby said the site would be required for equipment storage containers, aggregate stockpiles, material/goods storage and temporary construction offices until construction of stage 1 is complete.
“The sheer scale of our construction programme for the Street Upgrades and Town Centre Arterial means large areas are required to store the materials and equipment. Finding space for this is exceptionally challenging due to the constrained nature of our town centre,” Mr Hansby said.
The timing of the closure was planned to ensure it didn’t clash with the busy school holiday period.
Mr Hansby acknowledged this would add to the significant disruption in town at the moment and encouraged the community to keep the long term gains front of mind.
“We absolutely acknowledge this is an inconvenience and know that reduced access to parking, road closures and other disruptions can be challenging. We’re working on options for temporary carparking in the town centre and keeping up close contact with our business community. We’re grateful for the support, patience and open dialogue so far. The construction underway right now is significant but try to remember it won’t last forever and it will be worth it,” he said.
“There are some alternative parking options available and many of the privately owned facilities are operating under capacity. We have also been working hard with the Otago Regional Council to improve the bus service to ensure it is a genuine option for people commuting into or visiting town.”
“The temporary reduction in parking in town will be a good catalyst for more of us to seriously consider leaving the car at home and hopping on the bus or considering whether there are changes we can make to what times we’re traveling,” he said.
Mr Hansby said a Travel Plan is being developed to encourage Council staff to consider alternative ways of traveling into town and suggested other larger businesses in town think about doing the same.
“Having the conversation about how staff are commuting into work and supporting initiatives that will help them plan accordingly will help with any feelings of stress or anxiety they might also be feeling about the situation,” he said.
“We’ve also seen some great initiatives recently by event organisers actively working to reduce the number of cars on the road in light of reduced access to parking and road closures. The Park and Ride initiatives for LUMA and Welcome to Winter gave people a genuine alternative and were well used. This certainly saw an improvement to traffic numbers in town while the events were on,” he said.
Alternative parking locations include Council’s Boundary and Church Street carparks and in the other privately owned parking facilities. The Church Street carpark also offers free bike parking and E-Bike charging stations. The Recreation Ground Carpark is expected to reopen in October 2021 and further information about temporary measures will be provided as they are finalised.
Visitors to the town centre are encouraged to walk, cycle or grab a Bee Card and travel by bus to reduce the number of cars on the road while the town centre is undergoing a significant upgrade."
About Laydown areas:
Across both the Street Upgrades and Arterial Stage 1 projects there are a large amount of materials and equipment that need to be stored and sorted close to the construction areas. These materials include stone pavers, precast concrete panels, water, stormwater and wastewater concrete and uPVC pipes, gabion baskets, raingarden strata cells, geofabrics, light poles, manholes, aggregate etc. There are also construction staff that require on-site offices and toilet facilities.
The Ballarat Street site is just one of the sites that is required to house the equipment, materials, goods and offices needed to construct the two town centre projects. Further work is underway to find other locations.