Environment Waikato has granted resource consents for a new subdivision at Kinloch on the shores of Lake Taupo in a joint hearing with Taupo District Council.
The applicant, Lisland Properties Limited, had applied for consents to create 75 residential lots with a road network. Forty nine submissions were received by Environment Waikato – two supporting, 46 opposed and one neutral. Taupo District Council received 88 submissions.
The proposal is stage two of a three stage subdivision, following a small development called Lakemere on the southern side of the Whangamata Stream. The third stage is unplanned. The project required resource consents from Environment Waikato for stormwater disposal, the construction of a road bridge over the Whangamata Stream, placement of a pipe underneath the bed of the Whangamata Stream, earthworks to form the bridge embankment and internal roads and a water take from Lake Taupo for dust suppression.
The subdivision will be set back from the lake front with a public reserve and building setback proposed to reduce the visibility of the development from the lake.
Submitters had concerns about the effect on water quality in the Whangamata Stream and Lake Taupo, and the risks to trout spawning and habitat.
Other submitters were concerned about the uplifting of the recreation reserve along the lakefront, the perceived lack of an independent engineering review and the level of consultation by the applicant. Objectors said the subdivision would be contrary to the objectives and policies of the District Plan and the effects would be more than minor. Submitters wanted Kinloch to remain a low density, mainly residential holiday and retirement area with unchanged character.
They wanted height restrictions and building setbacks and an increased lakefront reserve.
Environment Waikato staff said the stormwater system could be engineered to operate as intended and the proposed earthworks could be carried out without unnecessary risk of sediment entering the stream.
Granting the consents, the Committee said the change from a rural to urban land use would not necessarily adversely affect water quality, provided sewage and stormwater were appropriately maqnaged. It recognised there was a need for the review of the stormwater discharge consent to ensure conditions could be altered. Protection of water quality and the beds and banks of the streams were of the utmost importance.
It was pleased the applicant would contribute financially to improving the stream reserve to improve its quality and the enjoyment of residents.