A resource consent application for a high-end retirement village in one of Queenstown’s most scenic spots is about to be publicly notified.
Local developer Chris Meehan’s Winton company’s proposing ‘Northbrook Arrowtown’ at Waterfall Park, between Millbrook Resort and Speargrass Flat.
The secluded valley, which Mill Creek meanders through, is open to the south and narrows to the north, culminating in a waterfall.
The retirement village comprises a main facilities building with pool, gym, reception and cafe, a care facility with 23 care apartments, 12 serviced apartments and 13 private apartments, and three multi-level residential buildings with 148 private apartments.
Near the waterfall would be a stand-alone 16-room boutique hotel and spa.
The development area’s in the ‘Waterfall Park zone’ with a small portion in the ‘Wakatipu Basin rural amenity zone’.
The retirement village is slated to be among a number of Northbrook locations owned and operated by Winton and led by executive director Julian Cook, ex-CEO of retirement village company Summerset.
Spokesperson Sonya Fynmore says it’s a multi-year project that’ll cost hundreds of millions and create several hundred jobs during its life cycle.
‘‘We are in a position to commence as soon as consent is received.’’
A rolling build programme would ensue.
‘‘Once construction starts, it will be an 18-month to two-year build until welcoming the first residents.’’
As with other villages, the apartments would be sold as licences to occupy.
In relation to water quality issues, given Mill Creek drains seriously-degraded Lake Hayes, Fynmore says restoring and enhancing the land’s natural features has been at the heart of the development, and they’ve ‘‘easily’’ spent more than $10 million on environmental measures to minimise the impact on Mill Creek and improve its health and biodiversity.
Measures include fencing to exclude stock from the creek within the development area, creating riparian margins, creek bank stabilisation, and planting over 30,000 natives within their stream catchment, which has attracted more birdlife including nesting falcons and ‘‘an abundance’’ of tui.
Though in a valley, Fynmore says ‘‘the tucked-away location means Northbrook Arrowtown has its own sheltered micro-climate, along with a sunny northwest aspect, making it one of the best pieces of land in the region, and why it was one of the first sites to be settled locally [in
Winton originally proposed a second retirement village on nearby more rural land, but last year put those plans on hold.