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The Wanaka Community Board has acknowledged the community will suffer a painful disruption from closing a short section of Ardmore St to traffic for six months.

The closure begins next Monday and ends in September. It involves the section of road between Pembroke Park and the lakefront.

Board members on Thursday, March 31, described it as a “short term pain for long term gain” and said the council must “crack on” with the next stage of beautifying Wanaka’s lakefront.

The board added two new painted roundabouts on Brownston St to the work programme, which also includes 110 new car parks.

Cr Calum MacLeod sought reassurance on behalf of Friends of Pembroke Park that an intrusion on to Pembroke Park would not be a stealthy attempt to build more car parks there.

Council officers said a piece of the park would be dug up for storm water infrastructure and reinstated at the end of the project.

Cr MacLeod also requested data on traffic use during the closure, to see if people changed their transport habits.

“There will be short term pain for long term gain.”

Board deputy chairman Ed Taylor said it was an ideal chance to “crack into” the work before lots of visitors returned to Wanaka.

“It will cause disruption and it is for a long period, six months, but I think it gives us a fantastic opportunity to do something we have talked about for quite a long time,” he said.

Mr Taylor said he expected the road closure would increase delays, so suggested painting two temporary roundabouts on Brownston St and temporarily removing some pedestrian islands, giving big vehicles more room.

If the roundabouts were successful, they could stay there, he suggested.

The board agreed with Taylor and recommended staff investigate and implement the roundabout proposal.

Resource management engineering manager Dave Wallace said there would be significant earthworks required.

If both lanes of Ardmore St were closed, the contractors would find it easier to manage traffic and pedestrians and could do more for less cost in six months.

If one lane was left open, the project could take three months longer to finish.

Board member Chris Hadfield said the Sunday Market people were concerned visitors could be diverted from going to Pembroke Park, and the council should communicate that town was still open for business.

Board member Jude Battson suggested trucking companies could be invited to not bring big vehicles to town unless they absolutely had to.

Ms Battson said the project would have an impact on events, but she called for patience and suggested people could bike or car pool into town, or test alternative transport methods.

Cr Quentin Smith said traffic data from a recently completed stage of the lakefront development reported more than 1000 cyclists and 2500 walkers every day in January.

“The key outcome is really good connectivity for shared paths. Break eggs to make omelettes. Crack on and get it done,” Cr Smith said.