It was a homely cottage, then a car mechanics, and most recently a mattress storage unit, but the next use of an old house sitting quietly in a Nelson supermarket car park remains to be seen.
The rooms of the run-down house standing in the Fresh Choice Collingwood St car park are filled with boxes and odds and ends, remnants of household items no longer needed. A few mattresses remain, propped up against the wall. Now the house is on the market after belonging to the family of Nelson man Graham Freeth for nearly 50 years.
Freeth has an original sale document for the house which dates back to 1927, although he said the house dated back much further. He believed it was used as a residential home until the 1950s when it became a car repair garage.
(The Nelson Mail, Tuesday, September 1, 2015)
Strong demand, particularly from Auckland investors, is slowly but surely increasing median house prices in Nelson, latest QV statistics show.
The QV House Price Index for August showed Nelson residential property values rose by 0.8 per cent over the past three months, with an average home value of $415,682.
QV Nelson registered valuer Craig Russell said demand from buyers outstripped supply of listings, particularly from Auckland buyers.
‘‘The low interest rates and Auckland investor equity restriction are both considered to be contributory factors in fuelling demand for investment property in the region.’’
Haven Reality licensee Jeff Rackley said he had noticed an increase from Auckland buyers which was contributing to an increase in median prices.
‘‘It’s been interesting for me just seeing properties around that $350,000 to $400,000 mark – they go very quickly,’’ he said.
Along with Auckland investors he had also seen plenty of interest from locals and first home buyers.
(The Nelson Mail, Wednesday, September 2, 2015)
He said buyers were having to make quick decisions as demand outstripped supply.
The proposal for a gondola based in the Brook Valley Holiday Park wasn’t on the agenda but figured most prominently in written and verbal submissions to the Nelson City Council.
A panel comprising independent commissioner Peter Raeburn and councillors Paul Matheson and Gaile Noonan heard submissions from 10 individuals and groups on the draft Brook Recreation Reserve Management Plan on Wednesday.
The remaining 36 submitters did not seek to appear – but many referred to the gondola proposal in their written submissions.
Though the plan doesn’t cover the gondola, the council-preferred ‘‘vision 1’’ allows for commercial development, opening the way for an application.
Vision 2 restricts it to a recreation and education hub.
The plan proposes a ‘‘sinking lid’’ for the 25 or so residents, so that when people leave their places are not filled.
(The Nelson Mail, Thursday, September 3, 2015)
Economic activity in Nelson is growing at a healthy clip according to Infometrics’ June 2015 quarterly economic monitor and, with improving returns in the broader region’s primary sector and increasing air connections set to stimulate business and visitor activity, this period of robust economic growth looks set to continue.
Infometrics senior economist, Benje Patterson, says, “Nelson’s economy grew by 3.1 per cent over the year to June 2015, which was the fifth fastest out of New Zealand’s sixteen regions.
“Economic growth in neighbouring Tasman is also healthy, with Tasman’s GDP having expanded by 3.2 per cent over the June year.”
Growth in economic activity is broad-based across most indicators of spending and investment, with firms also becoming increasingly confident to take on new staff.
And although Marketview data shows sluggish growth in the value of electronic spending on retail purchases in Nelson, this is partly due to new retail developments in neighbouring Tasman capturing more spending.
“Nelson households are showing a willingness to splash out on big ticket items, ” says Patterson.
“Nelson’s unemployment rate has eased to close to 4.5 per cent compared with a peak of 5.2 per cent in December 2012."
“Further evidence of these improving job prospects can be seen in the reduction of people claiming jobseeker benefits, as well as the soaring level of inbound net migration into Nelson.”
Infometrics’ report shows that Nelson house prices climbed 3.2 per cent over the year to June.
“Nelson will avoid many of the economic problems afflicting other parts of provincial NZ due to a relatively low exposure to dairying across the broader Nelson/Tasman region,” points out Patterson.
“The lower NZ dollar is stimulating returns for seafood exporters and businesses exposed to the horticulture sector, as well as encouraging more visitors to the area.”
Guest nights in Nelson climbed 3.9 per cent over the past year and the recent sharp lift in air capacity to Nelson will further stimulate visitor numbers.
“Jetstar, Originair, and Kiwi Regional Airlines’ recent decisions to begin flying into Nelson are also votes of confidence in the region’s economic and tourism outlook,” concludes Patterson.
(www.insideretail.co.nz, Thursday, September 3, 2015)
Housing Minister Nick Smith is putting pressure on the Nelson City Council to free up more land for new subdivisions as demand for housing in the region grows.
A quarterly economic monitor by Infometrics has shown a 29 per cent decrease in residential building consents in the June 2015 quarter, with only 39 issued compared with 61 in the same quarter last year.
Smith said while he was hesitant at looking at data over a smaller, three-month period, there was a need for the council to be more proactive in freeing up land for housing developments.
‘The message I’m getting from the housing construction sector is that the Nelson City Council has been slow to free up new subdivisions,’’ he said.
Smith was critical of the ‘‘bureaucratic processes’’ required by the Resource Management Act to build new subdivisions, saying it took too long, but a ‘‘culture change’’ was also required within the council to speed things up.
Nelson City Council group manager for strategy and environment Clare Barton said there is currently enough land zoned residential in Nelson to cope with the next 30 years of projected growth, not taking into account any intensification in existing areas.
(The Nelson Mail, Friday, September 4, 2015)
Long-awaited work will begin on the Trafalgar Centre on Monday in order to get the building reopened early next year.
Gibbons Construction has been contracted to do the physical work on the building, ground and surrounding development of Rutherford Park.
The project will be split into five work packages: compliance and ground improvements, the southern extension, infrastructure, external work and maintenance items on the main building, the northern building and Rutherford Park.
The total budget for the project for the 2015/16 financial year, excluding the Rutherford Park development, is $12.3 million. This is on top of the $667,000 spent in 2014/15, bringing the total cost of the Trafalgar Centre refurbishment to $12.96 million.
(The Nelson Mail, Saturday. September 5, 2015)
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