New child care centre ‘good addition’ to area

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Southland Racing Club president Sean Bellew (left) and developer Will Kennedy show an artist's impression of the new child care centre to be built in Invercargill.

PLANS for a $1.2 million child care facility on Southland Racing Club (SRC) land in Invercargill has passed the first hurdle with resource consent approved for the development.

SRC president Sean Bellew said it was the first stage of a project which was hoped to include a 20-section residential subdivision at Ascot Park Raceway.

Mr Bellew and developer Will Kennedy visited the site on Tuesday where the Blue Duck Early Learning Centre would be built. It would have a capacity for 65 children.

“What we are trying to create with the Blue Duck centre is to put a social content in the area. We have a retirement village, rest-home [and aged-care facility], hospital on the road mix.”

The centre would have a long-term lease on the land owned by SRC.

Mr Kennedy said the project included a 390sq m building, playground and car park, with a total cost of $1.2 million.

“The tenants who are running it – Tina Hardy from Blue Duck child care – want to open the facility in January for next year’s intake.”

The resource consent for the centre had already been approved and the building consent application was submitted this week.

“As soon as we get this sorted, we’re ready to start to build.”

Mr Bellew said if everything went to plan, there would also be construction of 20 “gated” sections on the other side of the laneway which led to the racecourse, which would be made up of a variety of housing, including townhouses, houses for the elderly and other ages.

“The idea is to integrate families with the retirement sites,” Mr Bellew said.

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