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Frustrated Developer Puts Property On Market

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Fuseworks Media
Fuseworks Media
Bill Horncastle
Bill Horncastle

Disillusioned by the on-going obstacles and escalating costs, developer Bill Horncastle has turned his back on his dream of creating a multi-million dollar holiday park on the northern outskirts of Christchurch.

The 12-acre block at 656 Wairakei Road, formerly Shenley Orchard, will be sold by deadline sale, closing on December 16. It has a rateable value of $1,110,000. Horncastle said that he is just so disappointed in having to take this action, but after three years of hitting his head against a brick wall, and costs in excess of $400,000, he was turning his attentions to other projects.

"The thing that really annoys me the most is that Russley Holiday Park would have been such a fantastic asset for Christchurch, especially with the Rugby World Cup happening in 2011.

Just where are they going to park the hundreds of campervans that will be around the city at that time?" he said. The proposed Russley Holiday Park would have included a range of accommodation facilities including 89 campervan and 25 caravan-powered sites, 79 self-contained two to six bed cabins, three 70-bed backpacker lodges and a caf/function centre.

"An economist indicated that the Holiday Park would generate approximately 50 permanent jobs and a total gross city income of $2.4 million.

"It is so frustrating when Christchurch International Airport, who have gone out of their way to ensure the Holiday Park would not go ahead, can subsequently propose a backpacker accommodation facility of its own less than a kilometre from our property.

"And to really cap things off, the recent report by Ecan on contamination was grossly sensationalised. The Christchurch City Council had signed off the effects of contamination as being only minor. In fact, the site requires very little remediation in order to resolve the isolated areas of contamination.

It is my understanding that the levels and areas of contamination found at the site would not be uncommon on similar sites throughout the Christchurch area," he said. The land will be marketed by Grant Chappell, of Harcourts Phoenix, who believes the property will make a magnificent lifestyle block.

"Where else are you going to find such a large block, with fantastic existing shelter belts, only 15 minutes from Cathedral Square?

It has the scope for a magnificent home, or even to run a business from the front of the property," he said. The original homestead was destroyed by fire in 2005 and now only contains a few outbuildings.

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