What are the implications?
We are all affected. Everyone who lives in or loves Wanaka.
- At an estimated $400 million to develop, and no word on who will be footing the bill: rate payers will be affected either directly or indirectly.
- But importantly decisions made today will have huge impacts on our children and the young people in our lives – and we will be responsible for these irreversible outcomes.
Social and environmental impacts
The impacts for you and your children will be:
- An airport area easily twice the size of the current Queenstown Airport, with twice as much impact on the local community.
- You only have to consider the issues Queenstown currently faces to see what Wanaka’s future may look like if our airport is significantly developed. Now double that.Numerous reports have cited Wanaka as being a great location for jets to fly in/out of, with frequency, both domestic and international flights, and while current consents limit hours – it has even been identified that Wanaka is perfect for 24/7 jet operations.
- Flights flying less than 1,000 feet over Albert Town and Luggate.
- Flights would also cross Lake Wanaka and Mt Aspiring National Park to travel trans Tasman or close to Lake Hawea as they travel north to Christchurch and Auckland.
- An influx of additional tourists, leading to over-tourism issues.
- A huge part of town is reliant on tourism. We are not anti tourism just as we are not anti growth. But we want good and well managed tourism that creates benefits in Wanaka not mass tourism that we are unable to plan for. And we don’t want to do what has often been warned against in the past – kill the goose that lays the golden egg – degrade Wanaka’s key tourism assets.
The impacts of overtourism
- Environmental pollution – we face busier and more congested roads, degradation of water quality and other environmental pollution. Quite apart form that, the very questionable environmental sustainability of increasing jet movements in and out of Central Otago.
- Infrastructure failure – our infrastructure won’t cope, especially if we become a transport hub for Queenstown, Milford Sound, Mt Cook and the West Coast, with the exponential growth that our town and communities cannot manage or afford.
- Endangering the unique character of Wanaka – Irreversible change to our community: There would be a shift from a quiet, community-strong town to a tourism-driven, crowded, soulless place.