Beds, airports and telecomms high priorities in new report on tourism infrastructure
Visitor accommodation tops an infrastructure shopping list drawn up by the tourism industry .
Tourism Industry Aotearoa (TIA) commissioned Deloitte to do an assessment of 20 tourism-related facilities needed across 31 regions.
Airports, telecommunications, car parking, water and sewage systems, public toilets and road transport were also listed among the top priorities in the long awaited report.
TIA chief executive Chris Roberts said it provided further evidence of the need for a substantial tourism infrastructure fund to help fill infrastructure gaps that could have a major impact on visitors and communities.
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Nineteen regions identified lack of visitor accommodation as a major issue.
It was most acute in Auckland, Queenstown, Wellington, Canterbury and Dunedin, with lack of worker housing also a problem in most of those areas.
Airports were a top issue with Gisbourne, Wellington, West Coast and Northland, and the report said limited flight options into places like Westport and Kerikeri make access difficult, particularly for domestic and business travellers.
A dozen regions were concerned with a lack of car parking and the report said visitors' inability to park close to popular attractions could see them bypassing them altogether.
Roberts said good coordination between the private and public sector would be needed to ensure tourism growth - 24 per cent in the last two years alone - was sustainable.
"The tourism boom is putting pressure on some of our most popular destinations.
"We need to address this as a country, otherwise we won't be able to keep growing, the visitor experience could suffer and we'll lose community support for tourism".
In the case of toilets the report suggested local councils work with central government to develop a standardised toilet design for roll out across the country.
Deloitte also collated a list of 673 council-planned infrastructure projects used by both residents and visitors.
Roberts said they were valued at $1.46b and that figure also backed up the need for substantial government assistance.
"The list was a real mixed bag of projects big and small, some ready to go, others just ideas.
"But it served to demonstrate the scale of the need. We have provided the results of that work to the government, and we believe it supports the case for a substantial tourism infrastructure fund to support local projects".
The Deloitte report said the tourism industry find it difficult to attract foreign investment in infrastructure because the country was considered "small fry".
Overseas Investment Office compliance and time frames were also a potential barrier for foreign investors.
- Stuff Nation