Wintergardens (now known as Five Mile) was a regional retail and commercial centre planned for 32 hectares of land near Queenstown by Australian investor Terrace Tower—a private company owned by John Saunders AO who was co-founder of the Westfield Group. We were retained as lead consultant for the project concept development, design development and RMA consent strategy and procurement phases. The project started as a privately initiated plan change under the Resource Management Act before being superseded by the territorial authority district plan review process. Our role involved managing the technical team comprising architect, landscape architect, civil engineers, planners, soil scientists, aviation experts, acoustic and traffic engineers, lawyers and economist. It also involved conceiving and implementing a substantial communications strategy and programme which resulted in unprecedented ‘grass roots’ community backing (1,600 written submissions of support during the hearings process—a record at the time). Notwithstanding RMA hurdles, aggressive tactics by commercial competitors and local council opposition—approval was eventually gained at the Environment Court after a five-year battle.
Terrace Tower (Pty) Ltd