Agreement reached over Forbury Park site in South Dunedin
Update : Forbury Park
The Forbury Park site in South Dunedin will soon be on the market, following an agreement this week between Forbury Park Trotting Club Inc (FPTC), Harness Racing New Zealand (HRNZ) and SEED Housing Limited.
In 2019, SEED Housing contracted to purchase land at Forbury Park from FPTC with a view to developing affordable housing that is resilient to the future impacts of climate change in consultation with the local community.
A new Racing Industry Act came into force in 2020 granting HRNZ new powers in respect of transactions concerning racing venues.
The broader 12-hectare site was subsequently made surplus after FPTC held its last race meeting at the South Dunedin site in July 2021.
Approximately 5,000m² of the Forbury Park site was sold to the Ministry of Education in June 2023, for the use of the St Clair school, which was consistent with the findings from the earlier community consultation carried out by HRNZ and SEED Housing.
Since then, SEED Housing, HRNZ and FPTC have been engaged in negotiations and litigation concerning whether HRNZ's powers under the Racing Industry Act apply to SEED Housing's contract with FPTC to purchase land at Forbury Park.
Now, the three parties are pleased to have agreed to a way forward.
Last week, the parties met to resolve the dispute over a portion of the Forbury land which is subject to a caveat by SEED Housing, and a confidential settlement has been reached.
This settlement means that HRNZ can now start the process of selling the site with the intention of investing proceeds from its sale to benefit harness racing in the southern region. HRNZ is hopeful that the sale process can be concluded by the end of its financial year of 31 July 2024.