The demolition of two houses will provide a temporary parking boost in Queenstown’s CBD, but the longer-term future of the prime site remains unclear.
Two Man Street houses owned by Sydney-based John Thompson have been reduced to rubble this week.
Thompson says the 4400sqm site will be used to extend the neighbouring Wilson carpark, providing 100 spaces, until he decides what to build there.
“Whilst this will be of some short-term assistance in relieving the chronic carparking congestion downtown, it will only be a temporary fix until the council implements one of its ‘moving’ carparking proposals, whenever that might occur.”
Longer term, he’s still unsure of what the future holds, other than “a grand vision to construct something that the citizens will hopefully be proud of”.
He sees an opportunity to develop “stage two” of the Queenstown town centre.
“One item on the agenda is the need for the town to provide some serious upmarket accommodation to entice high net-worth travellers who wish to experience the beauty of the area and to increase the per-head spend in the town.”
He says the standard of accommodation in town “desperately” needs to be lifted.
Thompson has a long history with the two houses, with one of them being his family home from the 1940s until the death of his mother in 1987.
The site is just down the road from the under-construction five-star hotel owned by Augusta Capital.