These lonely post boxes (right) are the missing link at Queenstown’s flash new post office – now a block away.
Visitors to New Zealand Post’s new location in Ngai Tahu’s Camp Street development must traipse around the corner behind Ballarat St’s Guilty Bar to stick letters in these old post boxes.
Ngai Tahu blames Queenstown Lakes District Council red tape – preventing relocation of the boxes – for the bizarre situation. Ngai Tahu claims QLDC refused to let it relocate the boxes because of perceived street clutter.
The barney comes at the postal service’s busiest time of year – and frustrated Queenstowners are scratching their heads about where to drop mail at the shop.
“It’s a bit stupid,” Ngai Tahu Property development boss Gordon Craig says.
“When we [added new post boxes] to the curb on Ballarat St originally there was no problem. But there seems to be a problem now, as there normally is in Queenstown.
“I don’t know what it is about Queenstown but it’s over-regulated.”
QLDC’s property subcommittee has suggested any Camp St boxes be against the Post Shop entrance wall.
“That’s inconvenient for customers, it’s harder to clear, and it’s just an acknowledged location that you put street receivers on the footpath,” Craig says.
“And we can’t put a foundation where they want it to go because we’ve got a big concrete beam underneath the building.”
Ngai Tahu has suggested boxes go beside fixed QLDC rubbish bins directly outside.
Mayor Clive Geddes: “We would lose a car park because you wouldn’t be able to open the left-hand door of the car.”
He’s “very surprised” Ngai Tahu’s application was made 10 days ago: “If this was important to them we should’ve had an application before us way before Christmas.”
Geddes called Mountain Scene back to add: “We’ll accommodate it somewhere just to get them through the Christmas period … until the property subcommittee gets back together in January,” Geddes says.
“It’ll be on the pavement there but it won’t be a permanent site. We’ve just got to work out what is the best place to put it with the minimum disruption.”