Published & corrected 10 September 2018 – 2 numbers transposed in original version
Housing NZ has completed the first homes in what will be its biggest regeneration project in Auckland, removing 3000 houses gradually in groups and building at least 8400 replacements in Mt Roskill over 10-15 years.
It again involves another Government subsidiary, HLC (2017) Ltd – the former Hobsonville Land Co, now with a wider role – as project manager. HLC is already undertaking that role in Auckland regeneration projects in Mangere & Northcote.
Image above: The Roskill South regeneration area.
It will also align with the KiwiBuild concept of developing communities of mixed ownership – about one-third each of state housing, KiwiBuild homes (state-developed, to become privately owned) & houses sold direct to the market.
Corrected: In Mt Roskill, the targets are 3000 each for new state houses and for the open market, 2400 for KiwiBuild customers. [State & KiwiBuild numbers transposed in original version].
Housing & Urban Development Minister Phil Twyford (pictured), onsite for an inspection yesterday, said the Roskill South segment of the overall Mt Roskill project was also likely to introduce the shared ownership concept, raised by former Roskill MP & housing minister Phil Goff when he campaigned for the Treasury benches in 1984, but rarely used since.
“I’m expecting to have more say on shared equity in a couple of months,” Mr Twyford said.
Mr Goff, now Auckland’s mayor, was at yesterday’s walk-around, which started at a new 3-bedroom house on Freeland Avenue, celebrating completion of the first new homes in Roskill South. His involvement with the neighbourhood goes way back: “I used to play in this street when I was a 6-year-old,” he commented.
The key to the financial success of the regeneration projects is intensification in existing suburbs, in many cases – such as the replacement at 43 Freeland Avenue – providing 4 homes where there was one.
Remodelling the landscape
The second important factor, arising alongside intensification, is the revision of the landscape. What’s known as the Freeland Reserve is there because, when the subdivision was begun decades ago, spaces not conducive to construction were set aside as “drainage reserves”.
In the second stage of the Roskill South regeneration, the covered drain will be “daylighted” and will resume being a stream, regarded as better to deal with stormwater. Auckland Council will lead that task, as it has done at other stream daylighting exercises in various suburbs where new housing development is taking place, and overall project manager HLC will contribute $2.7 million to the upgrade cost.
Modernising the old tram route
The third factor is access. Freeland Avenue winds around the middle of a small, undulating precinct between the maunga (the volcanic mount of Puketapapa – Mt Roskill) in Winstone Park, with the Akarana golfcourse beside it, Richardson Rd at the southern edge of the precinct, and Dominion Rd running from the fringe of the city centre almost all the way to the Manukau Harbour, passing beside this precinct and ending at Waikowhai Park.
Auckland’s first light rail line is planned to run out from the city centre, down Dominion Rd, and continuing on to Auckland Airport at Mangere. It will pass within 300m of most of the housing in the Roskill South regeneration, and also run past the Housing NZ regeneration project which began in Mangere in July, upgrading public transport to big job centres at each end.
Financing rental housing
Mr Twyford briefly mentioned one avenue for financing the increase in rental housing, private sector investment funds. That is about to start happening, assuming the successful launch of the Haven Living fund by Kerry Hitchcock (see separate story to be posted on Wednesday).
Related story today:
First homes finished in Roskill South
Related stories, 16 July 2018:
Putting change in context
Robertson outlines focus shift from GDP measure to wellbeing
Demolition starts on Mangere regeneration project
Finance minister calls Productivity Commission in to examine local body funding
Attribution: Site visit, Housing NZ & HLC websites.