A multimillion-dollar Bay of Islands development is being proposed for Kerikeri-Waipapa.
Housing for up to 2000-4000 people, a golf course, hotel, medical centre, new connecting roads and cycleways are among the proposal's features.
The new development is between the rapidly-growing Bay of Islands towns and will effectively join the two centres.
It will effectively increase the population of Kerikeri township by two-thirds and double its footprint.
Dennis Corbett, development project adviser, outlined the proposal to Far North District Council (FNDC) yesterday (SUBS: August 12), calling it a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity.
This came ahead of putting together a master plan with a cost of about $3 million. That will be used as part of an application to the council to change relevant land-use zoning for the area.
The 250-hectare proposal would be one of Northland's biggest. It is being proposed by property owner Steve Brownlie, who is also a Hawke's Bay orchardist and citrus juice manufacturer.
The site runs roughly northwest from Kerikeri to Waipapa, joining State Highway 10 on the west and Waipapa Rd to the east.
Corbett said consultation had already been carried out with a range of people including local iwi Ngati Rehia, Vision Kerikeri, Bay of Islands Golf Club leadership and Waka Kotahi NZ Transport Agency.
The 130- to 150-room 4.5-star hotel would be Māori-themed.
About 200-300 people would be permanently employed in the new development, Corbett, the former owner of a Kerikeri real estate company, said.
Housing would be mixed, including 200 apartments and other homes from across the price range.
Corbett said it was envisioned the development would include part of the Bay of Islands Golf Club. Seventy per cent of its members would need to agree before this could happen.
The new development is close to FNDC's planned future sports grounds at Waipapa.
Corbett said it would provide much-needed housing and connectivity between Kerikeri, Waipapa and the new sports grounds. The development's 10 kilometres of walkways and cycleways would connect into Kerikeri town centre and on through to the Kerikeri Basin's stone store and Te Ahurea (formerly Rewa's Village).
It would also create a much-needed alternative Kerikeri access, improving traffic pressure on Kerikeri and Waipapa roads. A new State Highway 10 roundabout has been discussed.
Corbett said the development would be largely self-funded. It would provide its own water and wastewater. Solar-power specialists had also been consulted.
He said the aim was to involve and support local iwi with the project and that it would include a significant cultural awareness. The aim was to create an environmentally-friendly, special area that was admired and supported by locals and visitors.
Rainbow Falls wetland and bush area would be enhanced with significant native planting.
It would take five to 15 years to build.