Archive | Archive – local property

Snapshot on local property, week to 4 August 2002

30 July 2002

Northland Regional Council has launched its first state of the environment report, as a benchmark for future environmental developments & improvements. The full report is on the council’s website. Also just released is the Northland integrated transport study, paid for by the Ministry for Economic Devleopment with input from the regional council and the region’s 3 district councils. The regional council expects its regional policy statement to become operative within a month, has 1 appeal on its air quality plan to settle but numerous appeals to resolve on the regional coastal plan and regional water & soil plan. The coastal plan should become operative by the end of the year. Resource consents have been granted for the Kaeo River management scheme and work will start next summer. Work should start next year to clear several other Northland rivers & streams prone to flooding because of blockages.

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Snapshot on local property, week to 24 June 2001

Latest: Property Council’s new retail lease out, Bayleys Research finds conditions ripe for Hamilton rent rise, Colonial claims great return without evidence, Flat Bush urbanisation proposals notified, two deals add 7.8ha to new Hillsborough park, too little detail on Metropolis bond revision, more weight to Environment Court.

24 June 2001

The Property Council has released its May 2001 retail lease, the first revision since 1990 (the Boma lease). The council’s research department manager, Nicole Humphries, said it reflected tenant needs better but was still essentially an owner’s document. Among the changes: compensation for relocation, total rentable area definition changed to reflect modern centre trends, provisions compelling tenants to adhere to centre trading hours, lessor covenants to clean common areas, gross sales definition includes internet sales, improvements rent removed, base rent no longer reviewable on assignment, lessor has right to hook into tenant’s computer system to monitor sales, alternative disputes resolution as well as arbitration.

Bayleys Research says in its June bulletin that New Zealand industrial rents ($65-80/m²) are way down the bottom on an international scale. San Francisco was high a year ago at $NZ255/m², but demand has pushed rents there skyward, above $NZ800/m².

Hamilton is the focus of another Bayleys Research bulletin item (further details, Peter Sluyter, [email protected]). The report shows A grade vacancy down from 12.8% at January 2000 to 4% in May 2001, B grade vacancy from 30% to 18.6% over the same period. A grade rents have held steady, but many leases are due for review this year: “Bayleys Research believes the conditions are ripe for some rental growth for the first time in years.” Outside the Hamilton cbd, stand-alone premises with good parking are the targets, but parking rents have increased. The report notes the trend to shorter leases — 2-3 year terms are common.

Colonial First State Property Trust’s annual report contains the curious — and bald — statement from chairman Bruce Abraham that the trust “gave a total pretax return of 34.6% for the year to 31 March 2001 (21.7% capital appreciation plus 12.9% income)”. Without a unit price guide in the annual report, it’s impossible to gauge the capital value movement of units. Total distributions, including one payable on 22 June, were 10.6942c/unit (including imputation credits), and again no gauge of a percentage return is offered. The capital value of the trust’s property portfolio shrank — a move which is both apparent in various parts of the report, and explained.

Proposals to allow urbanisation of the Flat Bush area of East Tamaki in Manukau City have been notified by the Manukau City and Auckland Regional Councils. Submissions on both proposals close on Friday 10 August. For Manukau City, the comprehensive rezoning of 1700ha, to allow development of a new town for at least 40,000 residents, is contained in proposed district plan Variation 13. For the regional council’s extension of the metropolitan urban limits, the proposal is contained in proposed regional policy statement change No 1. The city council also has lodged with the regional council for its approval a comprehensive catchment management plan and comprehensive stormwater discharge application, which are available for viewing. Submissions on them will be taken later in the year. Manukau City has published advertisements saying the variation would be on its website on Wednesday 20 June, but it hadn’t arrived by Sunday 24 June. For when it does: Manukau City Council homepage.

The Catholic Diocese of Auckland has agreed to sell 5.1ha at Hillsborough to Auckland City Council for a major park. The land includes the former Pah Homestead, also known as Monte Cecilia House. Monte Cecilia primary school will continue unchanged. The council began establishing the new park in 1999, when it bought the former Marcellin Hall site. The council has also bought 2.7ha for the park from the Masonic Association, including the tree-lined driveway to the original Pah Homestead. Remedial work will protect Liston Village access, security and privacy. Mayor Christine Fletcher said additions to the park could include land owned by the NZ Marist Brothers Trust Board and the Moore family.

21 June 2001

Tower Trust general manager Glenn Clark said on Tuesday he still had to examine Andrew Krukziener’s latest proposal to Metropolis bondholders, so it was premature to say the trust supported it. Mr Clark said more information was awaited to enable an assessment. This included a new prospectus. Mr Krukziener defaulted on his bond redemption last month. Mr Clark expected he wouldn’t get the extra information before next week.

Principal environment Judge David Sheppard has been replaced by Joan Allin and another new judge is to be appointed to the Environment Court. That, according to Courts Minister Matt Robson and Environment Minister Marian Hobbs, means the court has an extra two judges. That would only be so if Judge Sheppard continued to practise on the Bench, as many other judges have done in retirement, and that’s hardly the basis for self-congratulatory arithmetic. More importantly, Mr Robson said the court was reviewing its case-management techniques. The Environment Court currently has 3000 cases before it, of which just under 1900 are references on council plans and just under 800 are appeals on resource consents.

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Snapshot on local property, week to 16 March 2003

12 March 2003

Residential work put in place in the December 2002 quarter was worth $1.422 billion, up 19.4% on the December 2001 quarter, Statistics NZ said. Non-residential work was worth $871.5 million, up 7.8%, and the total of $2.3 billion was up 14.7%. Commercial buildings were worth $229.1 million, up 1.1% on the December 2001 quarter, which had been down 16% on the December 2000 quarter.

The Warehouse will move its Henderson store from Catherine St to a new 6000m² store in the revamped & enlarged Westfield WestCity. It will open next year.

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Snapshot on local property, week to 4 January 2004

31 December 2003

SEA Holdings NZ Ltd, controlled by Jesse Lu of SEA Holdings Ltd in Hong Kong, said today it had raised its stake in Trans Tasman Properties Ltd from 58.115% to 59.972%, buying just over 11 million shares on 19 December for $3.89 million at 35.175c/share. SEA increased its stake from 54.8% to 58.115% in October, when it bought GPG plc’s 2.96% at 35c/share. The other remaining major dissident shareholders were Christchurch businessman John Powell & his company, Latimer Holdings Ltd, each holding 8.7 million shares.

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Snapshot on local property, September 2000

Latest: Tainui fraud trial, Kaipara rates switch, Westfield NZ chief back to Australia, knife wielded at Fletcher Building, Cornerstone gets Orewa consent, Gillespie Orewa highrise decision reserved, Gillespie loses again on Pakiri project, AMP tower objectors given standing, Symphony plans three apartment towers at Henderson.

26 September 2000

An eight-week fraud trial relating to Tainui property transactions starts in the Auckland District Court tomorrow. Craig Beecroft, who was chief executive of Tainui Maori Trust Board subsidiary TCL, and Blair Kirk, an investor from Auckland, allegedly tried to collect $12 million from the trust board by inserting themselves in the middle of a Hamilton property deal in 1998. The jury was sworn in yesterday.

Kaipara District Council is considering switching its rates base from land value to capital value. The mayor, Graeme Ramsey, says in the council’s latest newsletter a consultation exercise will be launched soon to debate this.

23 September 2000

Westfield New Zealand managing director Grant Hirst will return to Australia at Christmas to head the international shopping centre owner and operator’s leasing programme. He will be replaced in New Zealand by David Kennedy, whose job as St Lukes Group managing director ended when Westfield completed its takeover of the listed New Zealand chain. The changes are part of an international Westfield reshuffle.

Fletcher Challenge Building’s construction and development division has been pared back from 30 to 12 executives. Among those to go by Christmas will be Paul Duffy, but Stuart Kendon will stay on. The tightening exercise comes as Building faces sale or disposal through a new float as Fletcher Challenge brings its letter stocks’ days to an end.

Cornerstone Group has won resource consent for its proposed 40-unit terraced housing project on the old State Highway 1 at Orewa, despite the reporting council planner’s recommendation against it. Rodney District hearings commissioners reserved their decision on Wednesday on Gillespie Property Group’s application for a 13-storey central Orewa development containing retail, parking and some office space, and 80 apartments. Meanwhile, in the High Court, Justice Robert Chambers has ordered the application of developer Ian Gillespie to subdivide land above the southern end of Pakiri Beach, back to the Environment Court. Mr Gillespie said he would appeal the ruling.

Justice David Morris has rejected the strike-out application by AMP Asset Management and Auckland City Council against the Society for the Protection of Auckland City and the Waterfront Inc’s High Court challenge of the resource consent granted for AMP’s PricewaterhouseCoopers waterfront office tower. AMPAM head of property Anthony Beverley said the ruling had serious implications for planning decisions made under the Resource Management Act.

Symphony Group (the project company is Henderson Valley Developments Ltd) wants to build 302 residential units in three towers at 2-6 Henderson Valley Rd. Waitakere City Council has opened the proposal to subissions until 25 October 2000.

20 September 2000

Kelland’s Real Estate launched a 22-apartment project in the former Jean Jones building on Cheshire St, behind Parnell Rd and overlooking the steam locomotive sheds a short distance up from Carlaw Park. The Aero development is by architect Colin Leuschke and Chris Morton and will feature an industrial look with high-stud ceilings, and mezzanine floors on upper units. Two have been sold.The remainder are priced from $118,000 (gst included) for a street-facing 35m² studio to $245,000 for 69m², containing one bedroom, a study, a mezzanine level and a balcony with views across the rail sheds to the Domain.

Colliers Jardine has pulled Andrew Hiskens out of Bayleys North Shore to head its own new North Shore office, and John Bedford from Premium Commercial to support him. Colliers Jardine expanded from its traditional Auckland-Wellington-Christchurch operation last year, turning the independent Brunton Patton of Hamilton into a franchise.

Independent commissioners were appointed today to consider an application by Hemisphere Properties Ltd (Chris Cook and Bastiaan Struyck) to demolish the Exchange Tavern in Parnell, and neighbouring buildings, and erect a 40-unit tourist hotel, 26 apartments, office and retail space and provide 198 internal parking spaces.

All North Shore City Council’s property files and related development activities will be centralised from early 2001 in a new office at 515-521 Lake Rd, above WINZ and opposite the city’s central car park. It will take services away from council area offices but should speed up processing of applications, chief executive Rob Hutchison said.

Former PricewaterhouseCoopers partner Jeff Todd will resign on 30 September from the boards of the three Property Leaders index stocks set up by Guardian Trust to facilitate listing of the Royal & SunAlliance Group on the New York Stock Exchange. RSA now owns Guardian Trust and Guardian Trust Funds Management and PWC is their auditor.

19 September 2000

The Stock Exchange’s market surveillance panel has embarked on making the announcement of unrealised property revaluations in company results more sensible, but starting with a temporary arrangement which adds a clause and will have its own complications.

277 Broadway could get to 60,000m² of mostly retail space, with an expansion programme which began this week. Michelle McKellar, heading the project locally for Intro International, reckons there won’t be room for that and another 60,000m² across the road at Westfield’s Mercury site redevelopment — and if something’s going to give it’s more likely to be the second of the two projects.

Earthworks have begun for the second building on Smales Farm, beside the Northern Motorway at Northcote.

Ian Gillespie’s proposal for a 13-storey building in the middle of Orewa has won support from Rodney District Council planners. The application for resource consent will be heard on Thursday. Mr Gillespie wants to build 80 apartments, plus parking, retail and facilities such as a gym, pool and tennis court.

Southern Capital reported a $1.4 million loss today for the year to June, its first period as a listed company since taking over CBD NZ.

13 September 2000

Kiwi Development Trust said today it recently completed a lease agreement for half of level 16, taking the total leased to 3,100m², or 80% of space.

7 September 2000

Is the residential property market dead? Not so, according to the turnout at Cornerstone Group’s promotion of its Oyster Cove development at Gulf Harbour tonight. Almost 500 people attended the function in the North Harbour Stadium, hearing 80s guru Ollie Newland plus promotion of the 41 three-storey, 115m² units Cornerstone’s Rick Martin plans to build in three blocks at the entrance to the town centre waters of the Gulf Harbour marina. Cornerstone got the site with resource consent in place after John Amoor of McLeod Construction was unable to get past 15 sales for his proposal. For Cornerstone, it replaces a project on the old Orewa Trust site, where consent issues proved too much of an obstacle. Prices for the marina units range from $215,000 to $275,000 — without rental guarantees. Mr Martin figures “you might get $300 a week”, which turns into a 7% gross return before all outgoings on the cheapest units.

Ross Blackman, general manager of Trans Tasman Properties until he moved back to Team New Zealand to run the next America’s Cup campaign, told a Property Council Future Directions gathering tonight it was small-minded to talk of a $30 million cup loss by America’s Cup Village Ltd. That cost should be weighed against the much greater gain to the region, estimated at $500 million in a pending economic impact report. He expects growth along the Viaduct Basin to continue: “I think it’s only a matter of time before the tank farm goes, and Auckland is going to have the most fantastic interface with the harbour.”

6 September 2000

Waltus Investments won approval yesterday to combine 27 syndicates into one entity with assets of $227 million. Investors in two other syndicates, Ascot and Colonel, will stay out of the merger after not getting the required votes. The vote was held at a deferred series of meetings in Wellington.

AMP waterfront tower fever is afflicting councillors on Auckland City’s planning fixtures sub-committee, who found they could not support a reconfiguration of the structures at the end of Princes Wharf to accommodate a change in conference facilities, even though it fits within the building envelope for which consent has already been granted. Committee chairman Juliet Yates remarked — without mentioning the AMP tower, which went through the committee on a non-notified basis last year — that submissions on the council’s Waitemata Waterfront project made it clear the public “are opposed to large buildings.” Council approval of the wharf changes was sought as a neighbour who might be affected. The committee received the notice but neither rejected nor approved the changes.

And now to really important issues: North Shore councillors — seven of them sitting as commissioners — will start Thursday by debating whether The Warehouse should be able to add two 10.4m² flags (one each to promote the Red and Blue Sheds) flanking the 24m² national flag already outside its premises overlooking the motorway ramps to the harbour bridge. Council staff assessing the matter would give their thumbs down to the new flags for creating “a cluttered visual appearance” and for “the potential to cause adverse effects”. [Follow-up story in Discipline/Resource management/North Shore City: Warehouse flags]

Two 10,000m² Farmers department stores will anchor Westfield Trust’s proposed Albany and Newmarket Shoppingtowns (that’s what Westfield’s malls in Australia are called), under an agreement announced yesterday. Farmers will also have a 7400m² store in Westfield’s Pakuranga redevelopment and an 8000m² store in the expanded Queensgate, Lower Hutt.

2 September 2000

The Securities Commission gave notice Friday that it had reached a decision two days earlier to prohibit distribution of a Waltus Property Finance Ltd investment statement for secured debenture stock, dated 12 May 2000, and cancelled the prospectus because the commission said the documents were misleading. The
commission found 80% of Waltus Property Finance’s total assets were tied up in loans to the Waltus group at 31 July. The company has told the commission it will appeal the ruling.

Auckland International Airport Ltdraised its after-tax surplus by 20% to $51 million for the year to June, topped $50 million in retail revenue for the first time (up 7.9%) and increased the value of its investment portfolio to $59 million with development of three new properties. It has six new property projects underway, with a
combined capital value exceeding $18 million.

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Snapshot on local property, week to 11 February 2001

Latest: National Property Trust earnings up 5.7%, Landco launches Whangaparaoa subdivision, Warehouse sales up but same-store figures change little, PWC Tower now 54.5% leased, FAL reports Q2 sales up, Property Council names scene-setter breakfast speaking quartet.

9 February 2001

National Property Trust reported an operating surplus for the six months to November up 5.7% to $1.56 million, from a pretax surplus up 9.7% to $1.8 million, on revenue up 18.8% to $3.26 million. Basic earnings per share fell 6.3% to 4.01c. The trust will take a proposal to unitholders in March to buy Southway Properties Ltd for 16 million units, with a three-year issue of convertible preference units at 11% part of the deal. Southway’s assets are valued at $43 million and its net assets at $17 million.

Land developer Landco Ltd (Greg Olliver) launches a $25 million coastal subdivision today next to Gulf Harbour, at the eastern end of the Whangaparaoa Peninsula. Sites in the 40-lot Catalina Point range from 2338m² to 8050m², with price tags from $250,000 to more than $1 million.

The Warehouse reported group second-quarter sales to 31 January up 12.6% to $553 million, same-store sales (excluding Clint’s and Solly’s in Australia) up 1.7%, sales for the half-year up 14.1% to $907 million. The Warehouse itself raised sales 10.5% to $400 million, same-store sales 0.7%. The chain increased sales space 5.7% up to Christmas, causing a number of complexities for the picture, such as new large-format stores suppressing same-store trade at older stores.

8 February 2001

AMP NZ Office Trust said tenants had committed to 54.5% of the PricewaterhouseCoopers Tower being built on Auckland’s Quay St, with 3½ more floors leased. WestpacTrust has signed for 3355m², including levels 14 and 15 and part of 13. Accountancy firm PricewaterhouseCoopers has signed for an extra floor. Construction is at level 11 and the tower is now rising at a floor a week.

Foodland Associated Ltd said second-quarter sales rose in both Western Australia and New Zealand. Here, Farmers Deka’s sales rose 5.6%, and by 2.5% on a same-store basis, though some sales were transferred to new stores. Progressive Enterprises’ supermarkets rose 5.8%, or 6.1% on a same-store basis, and wholesale sales rose 8.9%.

7 February 2001

The Property Council has named the speakers for the 21 February scene-setter breakfast to be held at the Sheraton Auckland Hotel: Doug Osborne of Landplan Pacific, Phil Toogood of Bayleys, Paul Dyson of Colliers Jardine and Paddy Callesen of CB Richard Ellis.

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Snapshot on local property, week to 4 November 2001

31 October 2001

Restaurant Brands NZ Ltd will take 51 of its 87 KFC stores to auction through Colliers Jardine in early December, leaving it the owner of only six KFC stores “in the interim.” The company already leases 30 KFC stores and all its Pizza Hut & Starbucks Coffee outlets. The company is selling on a 12-year leaseback basis and expects to raise $45 million, to be used for debt repayment and funding of several growth initiatives.

29 October 2001

Symphony Group Ltd moved office today from the old ASB building on Queen St to the Old City Markets building — level 1, 39 Market Place. Other details are unchanged.

Australasian Property Holdings Ltd has rescheduled its annual meeting to 30 November. Directors will also make shareholder presentations in Christchurch on 26 November and Wellington on 28 November.
Snapshot on local property, week to 4 November 2001.

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Snapshot on local property, week to 22 June 2003

17 June 2003

Australian listed company Tempo Services Ltd has won an $A15 million 3-year contract to provide cleaning & building services to Westfield Trust’s 10 New Zealand shopping centres. Tempo provides services to 22 Westfield centres in Australia. The company has agreed to operate under the NZ union agreement.

Barfoot & Thompson has sold $5 billion of Auckland residential property in the year to the end of May, making the past 12 months the most successful in the company’s 80-year history. The 14,309 transactions were made at an average $350,000. Top salesperson was Leila MacDonald at Remuera, who more than doubled her 2002 performance by selling 62 properties worth $121.5 million – just under $2 million each.

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Snapshot on local property, week to 21 April 2002

21 April 2002

Restoration of the former chief post office on Queen Elizabeth II Square starts on 29 April as part of the Britomart transport station project. Part of the square will be cordoned off during the restoration project. The square will be turned over to buses when the underground rail station & surrounding bus interchange are completed.

17 April 2002

Council pensioner housing is to be made a council strategic asset under the Local Government Bill, Housing Minister Mark Gosche & acting Local Government Minister Matt Robson announced. “This change will make it clear that councils that want to sell their pensioner housing will first need to consult with their community,” the ministers said. Auckland City has a sales programme under way, on the premise that pensioner housing isn’t core council business, and also has a consultation programme. The ministers said the Government was aware a number of councils were considering selling their pensioner housing. The Local Government Bill will require councils to establish a list of strategic assets but, as it stands, only shares in port & airport companies are deemed to be strategic assets.

North Shore City Council won 2 national awards for planning excellence at the joint New Zealand Planning Institute/Planning Institute of Australia conference in Wellington. Project 2020, a community-focused initiative set up in response to Auckland’s regional growth strategy and resulting in the City Blueprint, won the Nancy Northcroft planning practice award. The council’s good solutions guide for intensive residential developments won a merit award.

The National Property Trust has agreed unconditionally to buy the Dumbarton Building on Grey St, Tauranga, for $1.725 million, with settlement on 30 April. The 2-level retail/office building adjoins the Goddards Centre, which the trust has also just bought. The trust manager is investigating proposals to develop more retail & commercial space on the 2 sites.

Newmarket Property Trust has entered into an unconditional contract to sell its Rialto carpark in Newmarket for $7.25 million, compared to the $6.4 million book value, with settlement on 20 June. The trust has protected its ability to use the carpark to allow free parking for Rialto Heart of Broadway customers, and also to satisfy “present & possible” resource consent requirements.

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Snapshot on local property, week to 23 September 2001

20 September 2001

MTM Entertainment Trust of Australia and Force Corporation Ltd (now controlled by Sky NZ Ltd) postponed the mediation due to have taken place today in favour of direct talks. MTM was to have bought the Force Entertainment Centre on Queen St, Auckland, but reneged, claiming the completion certificate should not have been issued at the end of 1999 given the state of the building. The move back to direct talks follows Sky’s takeover of Force, and the separate change in management control at MTM.

19 September 2001

Settlement has been agreed of the Auckland Regional Council’s appeal against consent for Universal Homes Ltd’s 294-lot subdivision on the north side of Silverdale village, along the old State Highway 1 to Jelas Rd. The regional council had wanted a catchment plan completed before subdivision approval, though it was plain at the hearing the company had satisfied commissioners of its ecological planning.

18 September 2001

AMP Henderson Global Investors has canned a topping-off ceremony for its PricewaterhouseCoopers Tower on the Auckland waterfront because of the destruction of the World Trade Centre twin towers in last week’s terrorist attacks. Under the circumstances, “it would be insensitive and inappropriate to publicly celebrate our new building reaching full height,” development manager (leasing) Murray Jordan said.

Henderson Valley Developments Ltd (Symphony Group) has won approval for its proposed 264-unit residential development at 2-6 Henderson Valley Rd, immediately behind the Henderson town centre and across the tracks from the Henderson railway station. The Waitakere City Council hearing was held on Monday and the decision was made on Tuesday.

Rodney District Council’s hearings committee has approved a changed plan for the highrise to have been built in the middle of Orewa by Gillespie Property Group Ltd, which got consent for a 13-storey development last October. The site has been taken over by Cornerstone Group Ltd (Ric Martin), which has reduced the height to 12 storeys, reduced the retail component, changed the shape and increased the number of apartments from 90 to 149.

North Shore City Council’s strategy & finance committee deferred a decision on Tuesday on zoning of the North Shore part of the Okura catchment to a special meeting to be held on Tuesday 25 September. The committee adopted a Browns Bay town centre plan and an Albany village centre plan, approved a process to develop Takapuna’s old gasometer site for parking, gave landowner consent for the Constellation Drive station on the North Shore busway and agreed on a proposal to reduce the caravan area of the Takapuna caravan park to provide a public foreshore area and a new area for boat trailers.

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