Auckland Council hearing commissioners granted Samson Corp Ltd resource consent just before Christmas for redevelopment behind the Palace building on Ponsonby Rd.
Samson applied to build a 4-level building on the rear of the site at 42 & 44-48 Ponsonby Rd, at the corner of Crummer Rd, wrapping around The Palace.
The hearing panel of Kim Hardy (chair), Trevor Mackie & Heike Lutz approved the 4.28m height infringement – 17.28m, compared to the 13m height control for the site.
That infringement will occur on the Crummer Rd frontage and to the boundary with 38 Ponsonby Rd, but set back from Ponsonby Rd & the boundary with 2-4 Crummer Rd.
The application was heard in October & November.
Samson proposed to demolish a character-supporting building, alter & add to a character-defining building and construct a new building for mixed use activities – outdoor eating areas which will be within 30m of a residential area, which were opposed by some residents from Hopetoun St, on the other side of Ponsonby Rd.
Auckland Council’s Urban Design Panel considered an earlier design and expressed concern at the height & bulk of that proposal in relation to the character-defining building and from a heritage perspective, but considered that additional height might be appropriate provided there were explicit benefits, including greater enhancement of the public realm & no domination of the character-defining building.
Samson modified the design before lodging its consent application, then revised it again after submissions closed, reducing the overall building height & solar panel height and removing parapets, with upper storey setbacks from Ponsonby Rd and 2-4 Crummer Rd, and modulation of the façade treatment, materiality & colour.
Ms Hardy wrote in the panel’s decision: “We find that the proposed building height is acceptable within the overall site development context. We do not consider the new building will have an overbearing or dominance effect on the Palace building or the wider locality.”
The panel also concluded that a condition on operational noise “is sufficient to ensure that the proposed activities will operate in accordance with acceptable noise levels. This in turn provides the residents of Hopetoun Street with confidence that an acceptable level of amenity will be achieved.”
The panel rejected a more stringent noise condition and wasn’t in favour of limiting the hours of use of the outdoor dining area, but did retain a condition restricting music to background level for the outdoor area.
Hearing panel decision
Attribution: Hearing decision.