News and Publications

Property News - 19 June 2017

Ratepayer increase sought for dam

Ratepayers may provide millions of dollars in additional funding to the proposed Waimea dam as some forecast costs climb and irrigators reach the ‘‘limit of their ability to pay’’.

Tasman district councillors tomorrow are scheduled to consider proposed increases in the ratepayers’ share of capital and operating costs for the estimated $82.5 million project in the Lee Valley, along with TDC ‘‘credit support’’ for a likely $25m loan from Crown Irrigation Investments Ltd.

If the councillors agree to the draft resolution, TDC will face an expected increased capital contribution of up to $3m along with a massive hike in operating costs – up an estimated $460,000 to $675,000 a year.

Ratepayers may also face rates rises higher than a 3 per cent annual limit set in the council’s Financial Strategy and some other capital projects may be ‘‘reprioritised’’.

A report by TDC chief executive Lindsay McKenzie shows the forecast operating costs have risen from an expected $700,000 to $750,000 a year to $1.3m to $1.4m per annum after ‘‘a more complete analysis’’.

(The Nelson Mail, Tuesday 13 June 2017)

Brook braces for poison drop

The Brook Waimarama Sanctuary will close on July 2 to prepare for a poison drop.

Depending on how successful the aerial brodifacoum drops are, the sanctuary could be closed to the public for up to 12 months.

Brook Waimarama Sanctuary trustee, Derek Shaw, said the sanctuary was planning three aerial drops using a total of 24 tonnes of brodifacoum-laced bait within the fence between July and October.

Shaw said a group of volunteers was getting ready for a ‘‘pest mopup operation’’, putting out tracking tunnels and monitoring what animal footprints, if any, were still showing after the drops.

Shaw said the sanctuary had cancelled the consent given to them by Nelson City Council and were instead carrying out the pest removal operation according to new government regulations, following the brodifacoum/Pestoff 20R Code of Practice, the New Zealand Food Safety Authority and the applicable sections of the Hazardous Substances and New Organisms Act.

(The Nelson Mail, Tuesday 13 June 2017)

Airport development under way

The $32 million Nelson Airport redevelopment was officially launched with a ‘‘groundbreaking’’ ceremony on the site of the new terminal building.

Nelson and Tasman mayors, Rachel Reese and Richard Kempthorne, along with Nelson Airport board chair, Paul Steere, ‘‘turned the sod’’ on a patch of grass yesterday afternoon.

It was said to mark the official beginning of the two-year construction project, but in the background a digger was already at work scooping dirt and lumping it in big piles in the car park.

National construction firm Naylor Love was awarded the contract last month and will work with Gibbons and Fulton Hogan.

The project is expected to take a little under two years. Steere said the completion date was 679 days away, starting Monday.

(The Nelson Mail, Tuesday 13 June 2017)

Consents rise

Building consent applications are on the rise in the Tasman District. From May 1, 2016 to April 30, 2017, there were 1566 building consent applications, up from 1488 for the same period a year earlier. Applications for new dwellings numbered 502 in the current year, up from 412 for the same period a year earlier. Applications for new commercial buildings were also higher at 86, compared with 83 the previous year. Applications for alterations to residential and commercial buildings were down slightly, from 336 to 332.

(The Nelson Mail, Tuesday 13 June 2017)

Housing accord gets three-year extension

The Housing Accord is here to stay ... for at least the next three years.

Nelson Mayor Rachel Reese officially extended the agreement, signing on the dotted line alongside Building and Construction Minister Nick Smith.

Smith said yesterday’s official signing would help ensure sufficient sections and homes came onto the market to match the region’s growth.

‘‘The answer to Nelson’s housing issues is helping get more homes built,’’ Smith said. ‘‘Over the next three years we’re aiming for 450 sections and 900 homes. We need 300 homes per year to be constructed to be meeting the projected population growth of 500 per year.’’

Since Nelson committed to the three-year extension, 13 special housing areas have been given council approval, including the controversial Wakapuaka rural development near Atawhai.

The housing accord is intended to fast-track urban developments, not rural, so for the Wakapuaka development the council sought feedback on the proposal.

(The Nelson Mail, Wednesday 14 June 2017)

Dam plan lives on with higher costs

Tasman Mayor Richard Kempthorne has used his casting vote to push through a resolution that increases ratepayers' share of costs for the proposed Waimea dam.

The resolution passed yesterday means the Tasman District Council now faces an expected increased capital contribution of up to $3m along with a massive hike in operating costs - up an estimated $460,000 to $675,000 a year. It authorises a joint venture working party to continue negotiations on the new terms.

The resolution also opens the door for the TDC to underwrite a proposed $25 million loan from Crown Irrigation Investments Ltd that is tipped to make up a big chunk of irrigators' portion of capital contributions to the dam, which has an estimated total project cost of $82.5m. TDC and dam proponent Waimea Irrigators Ltd (WIL) are potential partners in the project in the Lee Valley for which the council has earmarked $25m in its Long Term Plan 2015-25.

Public consultation on the entire proposal, including the funding split, the effect on rates and water charges, governance and commercial terms, is due to take place from November.

A final decision whether to proceed with construction of the dam is likely in early to mid-2018.

(The Nelson Mail, Thursday 15 June 2017)

Shoe shop colour No 1 talking point

Number One Shoes' bright orange building paintwork in central Nelson is stomping on council design guidelines.

The Montgomery Square store is shutting its doors on Friday, and kicking it over to Trafalgar St for its new store opening next Thursday.

But while the new store may not be opening until June 22, its bright orange facade in Nelson's heritage precinct is already turning heads.

Some Nelsonians have aired concerns brightly coloured buildings aren't a good fit in the CBD, and it seems the Nelson City Council's own guidelines agree with them.

The council's Group Manager of Strategy and Environment, Clare Barton, said while the building, which sits on the corner of Trafalgar and New streets, wasn’t a heritage building, it was in a ‘‘heritage precinct’’ and the council had design guidelines that applied.

Building owner Hermann Seifried said he hadn’t been made aware of the guidelines and hadn’t objected to the building being painted orange.

He said the brand team at Number One Shoes must have thought ‘‘long and hard’’ when they came up with the signature orange and it wasn’t unusual for businesses to brand themselves with a bold colour.

(The Nelson Mail, Thursday 15 June 2017)

Farmer cuts back Pupu mining plan

A Takaka dairy farmer who wants to mine gold on farmland next to the treasured Te Waikoropupu Springs has significantly shrunk the proposal after local iwi raised concerns.

Matthew Crawford, 28, said he had backtracked on his original application after consulting with iwi Ngati Tama ki Te Waipounamu trust.

He was expected to apply for resource consent soon and the application would cut out 33 hectares of pasture that adjoins the renowned springs in the Pupu Valley.

Crawford hopes to mine in an area of 30 hectares of farmland further up the valley.

The closest point to the springs would be more than 500m away with most of the work 3 kilometres away.

The operation would take place at one block per year at a depth of one to 10 metres — with the majority being less than five metres.

(The Nelson Mail, Friday 16 June 2017)

Community housing proposal

A co-housing neighbourhood with communal and independent living is being proposed as a solution for Nelson's lack of affordable housing.

The Nelson Co-housing Co-operative board has been looking at buying land and building for the city's first co-housing community.

Co-housing is defined as a community of private homes clustered around a shared space.

Board member Jace Hobbs said depending on the size of the land, the community would accomodate about 12 to 15 families along with a mix of couples and single people. He expected the community would attract a diverse rane of people.

(The Nelson Mail, Friday 16 June 2017)

House prices hit new high

It’s music to home owners’ ears, but more bad news for first-time buyers. The median house price in the Nelson region has again hit a record high as the property market remains active, bucking national trends.

The median house price across the top of the south, including Nelson, Tasman and Marlborough, hit a new high of $483,250 in May, up 22.3 per cent in a year, according to the latest figures from the Real Estate Institute (REINZ).

The district was one of only four nationwide that reached a record high median house price last month as the fallout from the affordability crisis in Auckland, Hamilton and Wellington continues to make the regions attractive to buyers and investors.

The median house price was $482,500 in Nelson, $545,500 in Tasman and $402,500 in Marlborough in May.

(The Nelson Mail, Friday 16 June 2017)

Modellers Pond funding issue resurfaces after bid sinks

A bid for a lotteries grant to help cover the $1.2 million repair bill for the Tahunanui Modellers Pond is dead in the water.

The Modellers Society had hoped to contribute around $200,000 to the Nelson City Council’s fund to fix the pond through a Lotteries Commission grant. However, the Commission has declined the application leaving the council to foot the entire bill.

Sport and recreation committee chair Tim Skinner said despite this, things were progressing well and the council was committed to getting the pond up and running.

The Modellers Society had previously been tasked with paying for half the repair bill but told the council it had been unable to secure its full share of the funds without the council progressing a resource consent application.

The council voted to fix the pond, with the understanding the Modellers Society would still apply for lottery funds, but said even if the society weren’t successful in its bid for funding the council would still cover the cost.

The pond is owned by the city council and leased to the Modellers Society.

(The Nelson Mail, Saturday 17 June 2017)

Thought for the Week

Because things are the way they are, things will not stay the way they are.

(Bertolt Brecht)