World-class food centre planned
A new multimillion-dollar high end food and beverage centre could put Kapiti on the map and draw visitors from outside the region, developers say.
The centre is part of the Kapiti Landing development at Kapiti Coast Airport in Paraparaumu, and details were unveiled to about 150 people at a Kapiti Coast Chamber of Commerce talk on the development site on Wednesday evening last week.
New airport chief executive Robert Binney said about 1000 square metres of building space was set aside for a cluster of 11 different structures near Kapiti Rd to house "high end" food and beverage providers, with key outdoor areas taking up additional space.
"The concept is to build a world class food and beverage environment that will provide Kapiti a showcase for wonderful food and beverage products.
"We've got great producers here [in Kapiti], and food and beverages like Tuatara . . . so it would be great to harness that and get ourselves on the map collectively, not just as individuals, so if you are in Wellington you might say 'I'm going up to Kapiti'."
Planning was at an early stage with research being carried out into what type of tenants could be attracted to the centre, and what form the project should take, he said. However, tenants would be selected to avoid a pit stop or food court type setting.
"We want it to be a vibrant place where people want to meet, and an interesting piece of architecture. There is the opportunity for a street scape; an informal formal space, there'll be events, opportunities for things to happen, for people to do the outdoors- indoors thing."
Restaurants, cafes and bars were likely to fill a perceived gap in the "after five" dining market in Kapiti.
A farmers' market, which had previously been connected to the project, was unlikely to be a permanent feature, he said, though there would be room for pop up retailers. A resource consent had already been granted by Kapiti Coast District Council, but changes to the concept meant consultation would be needed to see if a new consent would be needed, Binney said.
The figure of $20 million had previously been connected to the project. However, this was no longer a good representation of the project's cost, and it was not yet clear how the actual cost might differ, he said.
Other projects that make up the Kapiti Landing development include an auto cluster, an information and communication technology hub, and a disaster recovery centre.
Senior development manager Dean Shields, of the Todd Property group, which holds a majority share of the Kapiti Coast Airport, said resource consent had been granted for a 2500 square metre building, which was "well into leasing". It was hoped construction could begin before Christmas.
Planning for an ICT hub was well into the design stage, with tenants being sought, Binney said. Two tenants were already in place in the auto cluster, and tenants were also being sought for two other buildings in that group.
A New World supermarket, Kitchen Things and Smiths City stores had been opened on the site in the past year.