Archive | Isthmus west

Smaller sign OK, but leave the mobile sandwich board at home

Published 8 February 2006

Jurisdiction: Auckland City

Neighbourhood: Onehunga

Applicant: The Money Shop

Application: 297-303 Onehunga Mall, application by The Money Shop for a 2mx1m plinth (both sides used, 4m² total signage; original application was for 3mx1m, total 6m²) placed in the front garden., a sandwich board sign & adhesive window signage above the front door of a category B scheduled building

Recommendation: The council planner, Fung Tsz Chiu, had recommended consent for the original proposal, which the council’s planning fixtures committee deferred a decision on when it met on 24 January because councillors regarded the plinth as too big

Detail: Councillors were happy, at their meeting on 7 February, with the 1m shorter plinth but insisted the unapproved existing signage be removed before new signs are put in place.

Mr Fung said the original plinth proposal was 50% bigger than allowed, but within the maximum permitted height.

The committee also insisted a sandwich board on a trailer parked down the side of the building not be used. At the earlier meeting, the committee had accepted an (oversized) portable sandwich board to be placed daily at the doorway & a sign above the door.

Earlier story:

24 January 2006: Applicants defer sign proposals as council planners recommend rejection


If you want to comment on this story, write to the BD Central Discussion forum or send an email to [email protected].


Attribution: Council agenda, meetings, story written by Bob Dey for this website.

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Eden Park board wants 5 more regular night spots plus 4 available for finals

Published 7 February 2006

Jurisdiction: Auckland City

Neighbourhood: Kingsland

Applicant: Eden Park Trust Board

Application: Eden Park, 4-42 Reimers Avenue, land use consent to increase night games from 16 to 25

Notification date: 5 February

Submission closure date: Monday 6 March

Detail: The Environment Court granted consent for 16 night rugby & cricket games in 1997. The trust board wants to add 5 games for either rugby or cricket and leave the other 4 slots, known as rugby buffer games, only for semi-final & final matches if Auckland is in them.

If you want to comment on this story, write to the BD Central Discussion forum or send an email to [email protected].


Attribution: Public notice, story written by Bob Dey for this website.

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Parore describes how century-old house falling down round family’s ears

Published 5 February 2006

Adam Parore & Sally Ridge’s challenge to the Auckland City Council’s proposed anti-demolition rule for pre-1940 houses read more the other way round when it got to a hearing on Thursday – a challenge to force them to keep an expensive house which has been falling down round their ears.


Former New Zealand wicketkeeper Mr Parore, now a director of his own mortgage company, Index Group Ltd, told the 3 independent commissioners & one community board member that he & Ms Ridge had bought the house at 41 Arthur St, Freemans Bay, for $2.4 million in 2003 and had intended to spend $800,000 renovating it into a quality family home.

But in August 2004 they were told they’d need to spend at least $500,000 on structural work just to get it to comply with the building code, before they do their planned renovations. Instead, they decided to knock the house down and start again.

And then came plan change 163

Unfortunately for them, by the time they changed their minds, designed a new house & applied for resource consent, the city council had introduced plan change 163, aimed at stopping demolition in the residential 1 & 2 character zones.

Plan change 163 was notified on 27 May 2005 and the application for consent was lodged at the end of September 2005.

Mr Parore said they moved into the house in March 2004 and planned to assess renovation ideas over the next 6 months, refining the design as their experience & familiarity with the site developed.

Practical matters soon took over. The footings were in “an appalling state,” the site appeared to be subsiding on one boundary and, Mr Parore said: “After a number of nights of awaking halfway down the bed we realised that the front of the house was gradually sinking beneath us.”

Among the problems he listed were:

The ground level became completely uninhabitable due to moisture seeping into the floor as a result of a lack of waterproofing
The upstairs bathroom, which also has no waterproofing, is now also leaking through the roof, blowing out the ground-floor wiring. “I will no longer switch on the lights on the ground floor – just in case”
The bathroom wiring blew out and the fitting fell out of the ceiling
The drains blocked, requiring the external drainage & retention to be reworked. “The shower & all of the sinks continue to backwash to this day”
The eaves on the northern side of the house rotted & collapsed as a result of there being no drainage on the roof of the lean-to extension at the rear of the house
The rear steps rotted & collapsed as a result of using untreated timber in their construction
The glass in the boys’ bedroom upstairs fell out of its frame as a result of the house buckling as it slowly slides forward
The carport door has collapsed as the structure buckled due to water leaking through its roof and collecting on the garage door when raised
The brick wall on the eastern boundary had to be removed after coming away from the garage wall supporting it and posing a potential danger to young (neighbouring) children who played beneath it.

Mr Parore & Ms Ridge’s lawyer, David Kirkpatrick, said it wasn’t simply a question of cost: “The existing house has been modified to a very great extent and a number of those modifications present real difficulties, both in terms of design and in terms of structure…..

“The evidence shows that whatever may remain of the pre-1940 portions of the house has been substantially modified, and not very well at that….. It is not capable of being brought up to a satisfactory standard without infringing bulk & location controls and spending substantial sums of money.

“In my submission, keeping this house as it is will not serve to protect historic heritage or advance the objectives & policies of plan change 163 or the rest of the district plan. On the other hand, the proposed new house will provide a quality family home in keeping with the surrounding neighbourhood.”

Lawyer says plan change should have little weight at moment

Mr Kirkpatrick said plan change 163 had gone through the submission & further-submission stages but these hadn’t been heard yet. Planners for both the council & the applicants said at this stage the plan change should be given relatively little weight, leaving the existing district plan as the dominant planning document.

Nevertheless, Mr Kirkpatrick devoted some attention to the plan change & the issue of “preserving heritage” because there’d been some publicity surrounding this application: “The essence of protecting heritage is to try & avoid destroying what is worth keeping, so as to be of value for the present  & for future generations.

“The applicants support that: their intention when acquiring this property was to renovate the existing house. But on closer inspection & investigation, it is now clear that the existing house is not worth keeping. That is not an aesthetic choice: it is effectively forced on the applicants by the architectural & engineering problems that the existing house presents.”

Mr Kirkpatrick said refusal of demolition consent would, on the evidence, “raise a significant issue about whether there was any ‘reasonable use’ that could be made of this building in terms of section 85 of the Resource Management Act….. If this house is not safe or suitable for a home, then why should Mr Parore & Ms Ridge be required to make do with it?….

“If the existing house is not worth keeping, then we have to move on: however regrettable it may be, the act does not require us to perform heroics once a building such as this is beyond renovation.”

He said there would be no precedent effect and no cumulative effects from granting consent.

The existing 2-storey weatherboard villa was built in 1900. 3 accessory buildings on the 976m² site would also be demolished. It’s at the end of a cul-de-sac immediately below Ponsonby Rd, with views across to the cbd.

The proposal received a number of written submissions and verbal submissions from 5 (4 opposing) at what was supposed to be a 2-day hearing but lasted just over 3 hours. I wasn’t able to stay for the whole hearing and didn’t hear these submissions.

The commissioners, Ron Wright (chairman), Ross Gee, John Hill & community board member Chris Dempsey reserved their decision.

Earlier stories:

4 October 2005: Parore & Ridge proposal challenges new anti-demolition rule

4 September 2005: Council moves to stop pre-40s demolition

29 May 2005: Plan change 163 stops residential 1 & 2 zone demolition


If you want to comment on this story, write to the BD Central Discussion forum or send an email to [email protected].


Attribution: Hearing documents & submissions (but not all), story written by Bob Dey for this website.

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Councillors reject oversize billboard on “lovely building” in mixed-use zone

Published 5 February 2006

Jurisdiction: Auckland City

Neighbourhood: Kingsland

Applicant: Media I

Application: 326 New North Rd, dispensation to erect illuminated wall-mounted 6m x 3m billboard in the mixed-use zone and projecting 200mm beyond the building profile on the western elevation

Decision: The council’s planning fixtures committee declined consent, in line with the council planner’s recommendation

Application detail: Council planner Scott MacArthur, recommending the billboard be refused consent, said in his report the streetscape “is rather eclectic and lacks any particular characteristic due to the absence of buildings fronting the street.

“The open spaces provided by the setbacks along the road have been utilised for other freestanding billboards….. I consider the existing billboards (& other freestanding signage) already dominate & detract from the streetscape along New North Rd and the addition of a further billboard in this viewpoint will, in my opinion, further reduce the amenity of the area due to the cumulative number of billboards on this stretch of the road.”

Mr MacArthur couldn’t see why the sign couldn’t stand 5.8m instead of 6m tall: “In my opinion there is no reason why the billboard could not be designed at such dimensions (ie, 5.8m x 3m) that it would sit within the profile of the building. It would appear that the proposed size of the billboard is more a result of standard sizing in the billboard industry than a size appropriate for the building on this site.”

Committee chairman Glenda Fryer said the building “does look lovely – why do we have to put signs up, which add to the visual clutter along our roads and which detract from an extremely attractive building?”

The applicant’s planning consultant, Graeme Matheson of Environmental Management Services Ltd, not surprisingly felt that although “at some point enough’s enough, we feel there’s still room for signs.”

Mr Mathieson disputed the council planner’s view that the billboard would add to billboard dominance of this stretch of New North Rd. He said in a predominantly commercial/light industrial area where businesses didn’t have high amenity values, the relatively high degree of “visual clutter” from signage was preferable to having no billboards. New North Rd was a major link road not characterised as being highly pedestrian-oriented.

Cllr Graeme Mulholland rejected the standard-sign proposition: “I can not accept the argument that you have the right to overhang just because it’s a standard sign.”

Mr Mathieson said the 200mm overhang didn’t extend beyond an outer edge of the building but did extend beyond an inner edge of a recession in the building face, so it was totally contained within the building’s visual profile as required by the bylaw. And he said it would be impractical & uneconomic to reduce the size of billboard from the standard to avoid the overhang issue.

Although the building owner made a belated acceptance of a 5.8m-high sign, the committee rejected the application.

Related stories:

5 February 2006: Councillors take harder line on signage

5 February 2006: Lovett v urban beauty panel: an “elegant” sign in a “hardly special” neighbourhood

5 February 2006:  Chairman’s vote defeats “graffiti-busting” billboard beside new motorway ramp

24 January 2006: Applicants defer sign proposals as council planners recommend rejection

24 January 2006: Council planner says sign promoting new hotel too big

14 December 2005: Bylaw review pending as councillors battle signs

21 September 2005: Councillors stand fast against more Downtown signage


If you want to comment on this story, write to the BD Central Discussion forum or send an email to [email protected].


Attribution: Council agenda, meeting, story written by Bob Dey for this website.

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Housing NZ integrated Mt Roskill redevelopment non-notified after no submissions

Published 5 February 2006

Jurisdiction: Auckland City

Neighbourhood: Mt Roskill

Applicant: Housing NZ Corp

Application: 30-44 Aurora Avenue & 701-703 Sandringham Rd Extension, Housing NZ Corp proposes to replace 10 existing houses with 21 homes in an innovative housing development on a 7093m² site just off the Mt Albert Rd intersection.

It infringes front yard landscape controls at some points, the minimum private space requirement for 5 units, the setback control for 8 entrances, the communal open space control as none is provided, the height:boundary control for some units, has a 12-space parking shortfall where 46 are required.

The proposal is for a mix of 5 designs – 8 2-bedroom units, 2 3-bedroom duplexes, one standalone 3-bedroom home, 6 4-bedroom duplexes & 2 5-bedroom duplexes.

Decision: The application went to the council’s planning fixtures committee on 24 January and will be dealt with on a non-notified basis; the land use & subdivision decisions were to be set down for a hearing, chaired by Cllr Vern Walsh with up to 3 members of the council’s planning fixtures committee as commissioners.

The council’s central area planning manager, Vijay Lala, said there’d been no public submissions on the proposal, but putting it through a hearing “gives the council, and possibly the public, peace of mind that it has been considered.”

If you want to comment on this story, write to the BD Central Discussion forum or send an email to [email protected].


Attribution: Council agenda & meeting, story written by Bob Dey for this website.


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Council seizes hoardings covering Dominion Rd building

Published 17 January 2006

Auckland City Council has seized a number of large signs from a Dominion Rd, Mt Eden, commercial property for failing to comply with the council’s signs bylaw.

Planning & regulatory committee chairman Glenda Fryer said the seizure fitted in with the council’s aim to improve the urban landscape by removing illegal signage. She said the enforcement action came after months of requests for the business, Stereo World Retravision, to abide by the city’s signs bylaw.

She said the business had advertising hoardings for stereos & sound equipment over most of its 99-year-old Edwardian Italianate building at 225 Dominion Rd: “This is a beautiful older building with an important place in Auckland’s history. We do not want significant historic sites, such as this, lost beneath a mass of modern advertising. Now that the signs have been removed, some of the unique detailing & original character of this building can shine through for all of the city’s residents to enjoy.

“This was an action of last resort, but one the council makes no apologies for. Stereo World or its agents did not respond to requests made in November to provide information for dispensation from the bylaw. The council was left with no other option but to seize the offending signs.”

Cllr Fryer said the building might also be scheduled under a heritage building review. It was purpose-built in 1907 as a butcher’s shop and was the first suburban outlet for the Auckland Meat Co.

If you want to comment on this story, write to the BD Central Discussion forum or send an email to [email protected].


Attribution: Council press release, story written by Bob Dey for this website.

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Decision on gateway Mt Eden showroom deferred

Published 22 December 2005

Jurisdiction: Auckland City

Neighbourhood: Mt Eden

Applicant: Davies Investments Ltd (Andy Davies)

Application: 10 Mt Eden Rd, office & showroom development in mixed-use zone, 6-space parking shortfall where 11 spaces required, 2 billboard spaces built into the structure

Decision: The application won’t be notified provided some more work on detail is done, but the council’s planning fixtures committee deferred a decision on consent to enable Mr Davies & his architect, Philip Jones, to come up with a revised design that doesn’t incorporate billboards. The committee also required that a comprehensive signage proposal be included with the amended design.

Application detail: Mr Jones said the decision was for a showroom which would be a big void. Mr Davies: “It’s like Vodafone (on Fanshawe St), but on a smaller scale, 3 floors of glass. We’ve negative-detailed the billboard.”

Mr Davies said the property, at present a motorcycle sales yard, would have a very-high-spec showroom built on it, “hopefully attracting a tenant which will pay record rental rates for Mt Eden.”

The council planning report mentioned the proposal “maintains the scale & character of the surrounding area.” Councillors disagreed with that view, saying it wasn’t in keeping with the old villas across Mt Eden Rd, but differed on whether that was good or bad.

Cllr Glenda Fryer found the proposal “brassy & shiny…. I don’t think it fits in. I can not see at all how it fits in with the surrounding area, so I’m feeling very nervous about it.”

Cllr Graeme Mulholland found it a contrast, but he believed the view down Mt Eden Rd towards this site would change anyway with more development. “It’s no different, to me, to some of New North Rd, where you have older buildings on one side of the road, and Newmarket, where glass has become the façade in a lot of buildings.”

Cllr Bill Christian: “I see this building will be the forerunner for others that will set their own standard on Mt Eden Rd.”

Cllr Christine Caughey was concerned about the “stark nature of this building in that location.

Mr Jones said the design was a glass box with a curved façade for display purposes: “We’ve seen it as a gateway building from the outset. The joinery is a higher quality to create this seamless glass. It complies. We’ve had good feedback from the urban design panel – I’m a bit surprised how the meeting’s going today.”

If you want to comment on this story, write to the BD Central Discussion forum or send an email to [email protected].

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Chevin gets cut in parking after zone change

Published 22 December 2005

Jurisdiction: Auckland City

Neighbourhood: Mt Eden

Applicant: Tawari Street Trustee Ltd (Peter Chevin)

Application: 19-21 Tawari St, application to reduce parking provided in a 5-storey 29-unit residential development from 62 spaces to 36 because of a change in zoning

Decision: Granted non-notified, vote 4-1 with Cllr Glenda Fryer opposed

Application detail: Mr Chevin said the original consent, granted in August 2004, had a parking ratio of 2 spaces/unit, which applied in the business 4 zone. However, the mixed-use zone had since been implemented, and in that zone the ratio was 1.2 spaces/unit.

The planner’s recommendation was to grant consent. However, Cllr Fryer felt Mr Chevin was taking “2 bites of the cherry”. Other members of the council’s planning fixtures committee disagreed.

Cllr Bill Christian recognised the strategic position of such a residential development taking advantage of transport routes, close to the cbd: “It’s magnificently positioned for public transport, both trains & buses.”

Cllr Christine Caughey commented: “I see it as a good outcome in terms of public transport. I see it as the way we should be moving.”

Applicant’s other interests: Mr Chevin is a director of Columbard Ltd (on Wyndham St), Columbard Scotia Place Ltd, Gridlock Ventures Trustee Ltd, Small Ltd, Stonne Ltd and numerous site-specific property development companies.

If you want to comment on this story, write to the BD Central Discussion forum or send an email to [email protected].

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Grey Lynn industrial turned into offices

Published 13 December 2005

The $8.3 million sale of a Grey Lynn building is the most prominent transaction in DTZ (NZ) Ltd’s latest sales & leasing report.


Grey Lynn, 316 Richmond Rd, has been sold for $8.3 million. The 7500m² property has 4154m² of floorspace on 2 levels and 80 outside parking spaces. The new owners are doing a full refurbishment to convert what was essentially an industrial-type building into quality offices. This follows a trend for the area, which is undergoing a conversion from industrial to lighter commercial & residential, characterised by a number of upmarket renovations. DTZ is seeking new tenants for space ranging from 200-2000m², with generous onsite parking. (Mark Calvert, DTZ, Auckland in conjunction with Rands Robinson Realty).


If you want to comment on this story, write to the BD Central Discussion forum or send an email to [email protected].

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Sydney-based Asian food importer hires Auckland space

Published 13 December 2005

Sydney-based Asian food importer Ettason Pty Ltd has entered a joint venture with ITC Investments Ltd, of Auckland, to establish a local business based in Onehunga.


That was one of the transactions in DTZ (NZ) Ltd’s latest sales & leasing report. The sales & leasing report appears in full under Propbd/Organisations/ Agencies/DTZ. Individual transactions appear in their neighbourhood.


Onehunga, 34 Alfred St, standalone 504m² office & warehouse, has been leased by a private investor to Ettason (NZ) Co Ltd (Ip Wai Man & Tan Duy Tran, Auckland; and Lancy & Quoc Xuyen Lam, Sydney), a subsidiary of one of Australia’s largest Asian food importers. The 1970s property will be used for the storage & distribution of Chinese food products. Rent is $50,000/year for 2 years with a 2-year right of renewal. (Leon Lin, DTZ, Auckland).


Onehunga, 105 Neilson St, 1010m² of standalone warehouses & offices have been sub-leased at $100/m². The 1970s property has good frontage with a large yard and is in a convenient location providing easy access to motorways. (Leon Lin, DTZ, Auckland).


If you want to comment on this story, write to the BD Central Discussion forum or send an email to [email protected].

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