Ratepayers are being asked to make a huge decision – whether to back the Invercargill City Council’s request for a loan from developers for the CBD development.
An additional $16 million is needed before the major inner city project goes ahead, and the council has already contributed $30 million.
With demolition of the site already begun, people have been starting to feel anxious about what will happen now, particularly after Covid-19.
At a meeting yesterday, councillors agreed to seek feedback from the community on further investment in the city block development.
The $16 million would be loan funded, and Mayor Sir Tim Shadbolt said council was honouring its commitment to ratepayers that any further investment would be consulted on before decisions were made.
“We have been advised that this further investment would not have a direct impact on rates – thanks to the low cost of borrowing.
“As your elected members, we have previously recognised your desire for a bright and vibrant CBD by committing to investing up to $30 million in this development.
“Now, we want to make sure it goes ahead, and we believe the only way to do this is to make a further contribution.”
When investment was first proposed, two private investors had already committed to the development.
Since then, one of those investors decided to withdraw part of their investment, leaving a shortfall of $16m.
Councillors agreed to the $16 million investment, subject to public consultation – which closes on June 12.