News and Publications

Property News - 16 September 2020

Call for higher price caps

People struggling to get on the property ladder are calling for First Home Grant price caps to be lifted, to keep pace with ever-rising house prices.

Nelson city and Tasman district were among 13 regions where the cap for existing and older properties, stood at $500,000 and at $550,000 for new properties.

Both areas were recently found to be amongst the most expensive regions in the country to buy a house, with average house values of $662,000 and $645,000 respectively, according to data from CoreLogic.

(Nelson Mail, Monday 7 September 2020)

Work starts on cinema site

Site works have started for a commercial development that includes a cinema at Richmond West, near Nelson.

Silky Otter Cinemas is the anchor tenant in the first stage of the development by Nelson-based family business Gibbons. The luxury, multiplex cinema is due to open for filmgoers by the end of 2021 along with some complementary food and beverage businesses at the site, which is to feature a village green.

Announced in December 2019, New Zealand-owned and operated Silky Otter is expected to bring an eight-screen cinema to the Richmond West development, called Berryfields Crossing.

(Nelson Mail, Monday 7 September 2020)

Upgrade plan hits bump in the road

The public is split on whether to close central Trafalgar St to traffic or leave it in its current state, creating a dilemma for the Nelson City Council.

The options

1. Widening the footpath to 6m on both sides of Trafalgar St between Halifax and Hardy streets as well as the sunny side of Hardy and Bridge streets between Rutherford and Collingwood streets. Parking would become parallel on Trafalgar St and the existing parallel parking on Hardy and Bridge streets would be restricted to one side. Estimated cost of up to $3.1 million.

2. Widening the footpath to 8.5m on both sides of that inner section of Trafalgar St and 6m on the sunny side of Hardy and Bridge streets. Under this option, parking would be removed from Trafalgar St. Estimated cost of up to $4.7m.

3. Closing Trafalgar St to vehicles, making it pedestrian only and extending the footpaths on the sunny side of Hardy and Bridge streets. Estimated cost of $800,000 to $12m.

4. Status quo – no changes made.

(Nelson Mail, Wednesday 9 September 2020)

Street plan hits speed bump

The plan for transforming Nelson’s city centre streets hit a major speed bump after a mammoth two-day council meeting.

The Nelson City Council met on Wednesday to discuss a report from staff that recommended maintaining the status quo instead of options to widen footpaths or close parts of the city centre to traffic.

This was due to public opinion being ‘‘finely balanced on two options at either end of the spectrum’’ on the proposal.

(Nelson Mail, Friday 11 September 2020)

State house applications skyrocket

The state house waiting list in Nelson leapt from 11 at the end of June 2015 to 212 at the end of June this year. In Tasman District, the increase was tenfold, from 10 at the end of June 2015 to 107 five years later.

Those totals mirror a national hike from 3352 to 18,520.

In Nelson on Wednesday, Associate Minister of Housing Kris Faafoi acknowledged the rise.

(Nelson Mail, Friday 11 September 2020)

Arts hub concept gets backing

A proposed new community arts centre for Nelson has passed the first hurdle, although questions remain over its location, design and target audience.

At the Nelson City Council community services committee yesterday, councillors received a report of the feasibility study for a new community arts centre – and referred it for consideration in the Activity Management Plan 2021-2031. The report recommended the construction of a new building as a multi-user facility for arts and creative activities.

The proposed development would be located in Halifax St, at the rear of The Refinery Art Space, with an estimated budget of up to $2.5 million.

(Nelson Mail, Friday 11 September 2020)

No letup in sales despite lockdown

Property sales have continued to surge in Nelson City and Tasman District, even with the region returning to Covid-19 alert level 2 in August.

Last month Nelson recorded the highest increase in annual sales volumes in the country, while Tasman had its busiest August since records began.

A total of 105 houses were sold in Nelson during August, an increase of 40 per cent from the previous August – and the highest number for that month since 2006.

Tasman had an increase in August sales from 66 in 2019 to 85 this year, a jump of 29 per cent.

The region’s soaring house sales continue the trends that began after the end of the level 4 lockdown.

In July, Nelson had its biggest increase in annual sales for 27 years, with Richmond seeing the highest level of activity for 18 years.

Median house prices told a slightly different story, with significant regional variation.

(Nelson Mail, Saturday 12 September 2020)

‘Significant red flags’ raised over Waimea dam project

Geological risks and costs associated with the Covid-19 pandemic are ‘‘significant red flags’’ over the Waimea dam project, a councillor says.

Waimea Water Ltd chief executive Mike Scott this week outlined ‘‘cost pressures and threats’’ facing the project, which already had $25 million added to the estimated build cost due to ‘‘unforeseen geological conditions’’ announced in February. That $25m increase took the budget to $129.4m.

The $129.4m estimate was still perceived to be the build cost ‘‘based on what we know today’’, Scott told Tasman District councillors at a meeting on Thursday.

(Nelson Mail, Saturday 12 September 2020)

Dogs to be unleashed at new dedicated park

Nelson dog owners will soon have a dedicated, fenced park to let their pets loose in.

Nelson City Council sports and recreation committee chairman Councillor Tim Skinner said he expected the new park, in Marsden Valley, to be very popular when it opened early next month.

(Nelson Mail, Saturday 12 September 2020)

High hopes for greener concrete

Balancing the need for new homes with the necessity to cut greenhouse emissions may have become easier, with the development of a concrete ingredient said to be able to slash the construction industry’s carbon footprint.

Concrete made with the admixture D5 Green was used for the first time in New Zealand – in a house build in Tasman District – last month.

Manufacturer Neocrete said the powder, made from natural minerals, strengthened concrete by up to 34 per cent.

(Nelson Mail, Saturday 12 September 2020)