News and Publications

Property News: 19 November 2018

Dam funding claim queried

The basis for some of the key decisions on the controversial Waimea dam project has been called into question.

Tasman district councillor Dana Wensley on Thursday told her fellow elected representatives that some ‘‘crucial’’ council decisions had been based on a claim that Waimea Irrigators Ltd (WIL) – Tasman District Council’s joint-venture partner in the project – had reached its ‘‘limit to pay’’. However, WIL had since ‘‘openly and publicly’’ declared it had another $11.5 million.

The Richmond ward councillor said she had gone back over council decisions ‘‘based on the fact that the irrigators are at their limit to pay’’. She had asked herself if she had relied on that information ‘‘to reach some crucial decisions around credit support, cost overruns, sunk costs’’.

Towards the end of 2017, under the heading ‘‘Credit Support’’ in a council public consultation document on the dam proposal, it says TDC ‘‘is the only party that has the financial strength to provide that support’’.

In July, it was revealed that an additional $23m was needed for the project after expected costs were updated. On August 28, councillors voted 8-6 against proceeding with the project. However, at a behind-closed-doors meeting on September 6, they voted 9-5 to revoke the August 28 decision after a new funding model lowered the expected costs for ratepayers.

A final council decision on the dam project is scheduled to be made on November 30.

(The Nelson Mail, Monday 12 November 2018)

Helper thrilled with new home

Getting the keys to a new home can be an emotional experience for anyone, but especially for a Nelson woman whose house was destroyed by arson 10 months ago.

Guyton-Miller, her husband and son escaped their former home on Gladstone Rd after fire took hold just after midnight on January 27. The only possessions they salvaged were some photos and a watch. Their pet dog Dre died in the blaze.

Nelson company Homes By Orange built the new family home on the site of the former one. ‘‘It was an opportunity to help someone who helps others,’’ general manager Jo Neale said. It delivered the house Guyton-Miller wanted, while staying within her budget, with support from local suppliers and contractors.

(The Nelson Mail, Monday 12 November 2018)

LEASED: CBD shops fill up

Nelson’s CBD is fighting back against empty shops with a surge of new leases being signed for business premises right across the city.

66 Bridge Street, which used to be Marshalls Fashions, has been leased to chain store Mobilic – a mobile phone accessory shop which opened last Friday.

The former Number One Shoes building in Montgomery Square has also been split into several small premises, with one already being leased to an Asian food store.

F54 gym and Coffee 101 is set to open at 101 Bridge St, and part of the former ANZ building on the corner of Trafalgar and Hardy Sts has also been leased.

Barkers clothing store has also moved to an empty high-profile Trafalgar St site and Hunter Furniture has taken over an empty space at 29 Vanguard St.

(The Nelson Weekly, Wednesday 14 November 2018)

Refinery gets hot pink makeover

If you have driven along Halifax St recently you might have noticed something a little different about the Refinery Artspace building.

The contemporary community arts centre has just received a hot pink, red and black makeover in the spirit of its bold mission.

The Refinery Artspace is administered by Arts Council Nelson which uses it to create community art projects. It is open for artists to exhibit in, is the major venue for the Nelson Fringe Festival and rents out six studio spaces to local artists.

Nelson City Council funded the refresh but it had to pass muster with the Heritage Group, due to its proximity to Anzac Park.

(The Nelson Weekly, Wednesday 14 November 2018)

Victory School's sewage woes resolved

Victory Primary School’s playground sewage problems have been addressed.

Paul Shattock, communications manager at Nelson City Council says they have upgraded the sewer line in Vanguard St.

As reported by the Nelson Weekly in August, the school has been plagued by overflowing sewage during heavy rain for the past three years, meaning its playground must be closed and treated before children can play on it again.

The project is expected to be finished by the end of November at a cost of $320,000, subject to weather or any unexpected delays.

(The Nelson Weekly, Wednesday 14 November 2018)

No Christmas at Greenmeadows

Stoke’s Greenmeadows community centre will probably not be completed until January next year.

Nelson City Council’s group manager of infrastructure, Alec Louverdis, gave a brief update on the project at a meeting of the audit risk and finance committee on Tuesday.

Louverdis said most of the building would be finished in December, but the entire project would not be completed by then.

‘‘At this stage, the cafe has already been completed, and we will progressively move through the other stages of the building,’’ he said.

(The Nelson Mail, Wednesday 14 November 2018)

Leap in Nelson land values

Nelson city’s land values have skyrocketed in the past three years, according to the latest Quotable Value figures.

The average capital value of Nelson’s residential properties has risen 36.6 per cent, and the average residential land value has also shot up, with a 48.5 per cent increase.

Land value forms the basis of rates calculations for the Nelson City Council. Councillor Ian Barker noted that though there was a significant average increase, not all properties had the same increases. ‘‘If there are different increases in land value in different parts of city, we get winners and losers, and sometimes they’re significant winners and significant losers,’’ he said.

The valuations were a ‘‘snapshot’’ of the Nelson property market on September 1, 2018. The average house sold in Nelson today could expect to fetch about $610,000, and an average residential section could expect to go for $292,000.

Objections to the new QV valuations can be lodged in writing with QV via the website Rating Values up until January 18.

(The Nelson Mail, Friday 16 November 2018)

Waimea dam proposal shown to be largest investment involving Crown

The funding proposal for the Waimea dam project represents the largest investment of its type involving the Crown, documents show.

Crown Irrigation Investments Ltd (CCIL) chief executive Murray Gribben made the comment in confirmed minutes of the confidential session of a Tasman District Council extraordinary meeting on September 6.

Those minutes were released after a request by the Nelson Mail under the Local Government Official Information and Meetings Act.

The council and Waimea Irrigators Ltd (WIL) are proposed joint-venture partners in the multimillion-dollar project to build a dam in the Lee Valley. Funding for the project from central Government is expected to include a $7 million grant from the Freshwater Improvement Fund.

In addition, CIIL is tipped to provide a $22m loan for WIL and a $10m interest-free loan to the council. CIIL was involved in the development of a renewed funding model for the project after the anticipated cost climbed by $23m.

According to the released confidential minutes of the September 6 meeting, Gribben confirmed CIIL had been working on this revised funding ‘‘for some time’’ and was ‘‘essentially providing 40 per cent of the funding for the project’’.

‘‘This is why council can expect only a small proportion, if any, of the amount they have applied for from the PGF,’’ the minutes say.

(The Nelson Mail, Saturday 17 November 2018)

Thought for the Week

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