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Property News 27th July 2015

Hope School Harnesses the Sun

A Tasman District primary school that is among the oldest in the country is not letting its age show when it comes to adopting new technology.

Hope School which opened in 1852 has had a 20-panel solar system installed by SolarCity.

The solar system will save money on powering classrooms and also help combat climate change.  It is expected the 5kW system will cut the school’s carbon emissions by more than one tonne every year.

The solar system will not only supply energy for the school, but will also act as a teaching device for students.
Andy Booth, chief executive of SolarCity, said the company had installed solar systems on 22 other schools around the country.

(The Nelson Mail, Monday, July 20, 2015)

Region’s Economy is Booming

Nelson is the second-fastest growing region in New Zealand based on gross domestic product (GDP), a new economic indicator report shows.The six-monthly report released by the Nelson Regional Economic Development Agency showed the region’s GDP had increased 4.3 per cent in the year to March 2014, well above the national growth at 2.5 per cent.

The Nelson economy also topped the country in business services growth, particularly in the construction sector with 13.3 per cent growth, and in the retail sector with 10.3 per cent growth within the past year.

Gibbons Construction managing director Scott Gibbons said he had seen steady growth in the construction industry in Nelson, particularly in the commercial sector.

By the numbers

  • GDP up 4.3 per cent in the year to March 2014, compared to 2.5 per cent nationally.
  • Employment levels were at 63.6 per cent of the Nelson and Tasman working-age population, behind the national figure of 65 per cent.
  • Retail Sales in the year to December 2014 were up 8.9 per cent on the previous year, well ahead of the New Zealand average at 4.9 per cent.
  • Food exports through Port Nelson for the year to June 2014 were down by 2 per cent on the previous year.
  • International guest visitor nights were up 4.5 per cent and domestic guest nights were up 5.6 per cent.
(The Nelson Mail, Wednesday, July 22, 2015)

Historic House Set to Reopen

Historic Stoke house Broadgreen is to reopen on August 1, after the volunteer group that has provided guides for 50 years persuaded the Nelson City Council to back away from winter closures. Broadgreen Society chair Mary Gavin said the 40 guides on the roster would have the house open seven days a week.

At the council’s community services committee meeting earlier this month, historian and former councillor Hilary Mitchell called Broadgreen a ‘‘jewel in the chain’’ of Nelson’s built history.

But it has been costing ratepayers far more than other historic homes, and with low winter visitor numbers, the council wanted to close it for the winter months, allowing more of its heritage funding budget to be used elsewhere.

A council report said that in 2014-15, visits to Broadgreen averaged 85 a month in winter and 429 a month in summer. It said Broadgreen cost the council $138,643 in 2013-14, with staff costs of $119,487.

In contrast, Isel House cost $18,572, with just $850 allocated to staffing, and Melrose $35,440, with only $2276 for staffing. This is because the council has provided staff to manage Broadgreen and support the volunteers, many of whom are retirees.

The council intends to continue to locate staff at Broadgreen five days a week from October 1 to May 31. 
Broadgreen House, built in 1855, is owned by the council. The society owns the adjoining Broadgreen Centre.

(The Nelson Mail, Thursday, July 23, 2015)

Seniors Flock to Village Life

Demand appears high for lifestyle village living for older people in Nelson, with more than half the villas and terrace houses in Richmond’s $50 million Olive Estate sold, and over 70 per cent of the units in the first stage occupied.

Olive Estate general manager Kristin Nimmo said stage one of the project was completed last week with 20 units occupied and new residents scheduled to move in over the next few weeks. Construction began on the 8.4 hectare Olive Estate lifestyle village last September and the first stage consisted of 20 villas and eight terrace houses.

The civil works for stage 2a started two weeks ago, which would see 10 two- and three bedroom villas and four terrace houses built, said Nimmo. Construction of the lifestyle village was expected to continue through to 2019 and once complete, Olive Estate would house up to 400 residents in 112 villas, 30 two storey townhouses and three multi-storey apartment blocks containing 26 apartments. It will also include a care facility with serviced apartments, a rest home, dementia care, hospital care units and the Olive Market, which was being designed and would feature a cafe, general store and hair and beauty salon all open to the wider community. The village will have 223 villas, 59 care apartments and 62 care beds when complete.

(The Nelson Mail, Thursday, July 23, 2015)

Centre to Boost Seafood Industry

World leading research to boost the value of the seafood industry will be carried out at a new purpose-built $7.5 million research facility at Port Nelson.

Crown research institute Plant & Food’s 46 staff will be based in the new Akersten St building. The facility will be used for research in the area of ‘‘precision seafood harvesting’’, technology which allows the fishing industry to land live fish in excellent condition providing access to premium markets.

Port Nelson, which will own the new multi-million building, hopes to convert the area into a science and technology seafood precinct. It is anticipated that other research organisations and education providers will build facilities on the site.

Plant & Food’s seafood technologies general manager Danette Olsen said being surrounded by others working in the seafood sector would have a positive spinoff effects for researchers.

(The Nelson Mail, July 24, 2015)

Centre to Re-Open Within a Year

An earthquake-strengthened Trafalgar Centre with a rebuilt northern end should be fully operational by the end of June next year following a Nelson City Council decision to spend an estimated $13 million. With more than $6m to go on the Greenmeadows community and sports complex, councillors yesterday approved spending totalling nearly $20m.

The engineering issues around the Trafalgar Centre project were outlined at a special council meeting last week and yesterday there was a unanimous vote to go ahead. Mayor Rachel Reese paid tribute to project manager Richard Kirby and the engineering team for making the complex problems understandable, and thanked Saxton Stadium’s regular users for their ‘‘generosity and goodwill’’ in allowing Trafalgar Centre activities to shift there.

Kirby, who last week said the projected cost of just under $13m might come down by as much as $1.9m when final pricing was agreed, said he was confident the decision offered the smartest and most cost-effective solution at a price ‘‘significantly less’’ than some of the earlier estimates.

Design work for the northern end rebuild to replace the main entrance, kitchen, toilets and Victory Room will be reported back to councillors by September. Kirby said the main building and southern extension – completed for $7m just four years ago but not earthquake safe – should reopen by the end of March, with the northern building finished by the end of June.

(The Nelson Mail, July 24, 2015)

Badminton Club Reassured Play Can Go On

Stoke badminton players fear that the suburbs planned $6.14 million community and sports complex will bring about the demolition of the Stoke Memorial Hall, depriving them of their frequently-used venue. But deputy mayor and city council Stoke development group chairman Paul Matheson says the two buildings are unrelated and that any decision on the hall’s future is years away.

The stucco-clad hall, built in 1951, is classified as an earthquake risk. Nelson City Council has a compliance date of 2029 to bring it up to the required standard.

(The Nelson Mail, July 24, 2015)

Seating Purchase a Win for Motueka

Good Sports Motueka has bought Tasman District Council’s 3000 temporary seats. The community group won the sale at the eleventh hour after a previous confidential decision by the council to sell the seats to Nelson City is understood to have been thwarted by a notice of motion by councillor Trevor Norriss which went before councillors during a closed meeting last week.

Good Sports Motueka chairman George Sturgeon said the group will pay $100,000, plus GST, for the seats and has paid the council a $5000 deposit.  Having the seats meant large crowds would continue to be hosted at national rugby games at Sports Park Motueka, which was developed by the community group. Sturgeon said Nelson City, which spent $700,000 in April on 6000 stadium seats, could hire the Good Sports seats if they needed more.

The seats were purchased by Tasman for close to $500,000 in 2007 as the district’s contribution to the development of Nelson’s Trafalgar Park so it would meet NZ Rugby Union guidelines and be used for Air New Zealand Cup and Tasman Makos games.

(The Nelson Mail, July 24, 2015)

Forest Harvest Gets Go-Ahead

Logging of a 25-hectare pine forest block beside the Brook Waimarama Sanctuary is set to begin next month following Nelson City Council approval, shutting the Dun Mountain Trail for up to 16 weeks. The harvest is being brought forward by four months to accommodate the building of the sanctuary’s pest-proof fence, with work on the fence section below the block scheduled to begin in December.

The felling will see six logging trucks travelling up and down the Brook Valley and through the city each weekday for 12-15 weeks, observing a forest industry voluntary code of practice that limits speed and avoids using the Central School section of Nile St when school is going in and coming out.

(The Nelson Mail, July 25, 2015)

Faster Rural Broadband On The Way For Appleby Area

Businesses and rural residents in the Appleby area should be reaping the benefits of faster internet after upgrades to rural broadband cabinets.  Chorus says.

A recently upgraded cabinet on the Appleby Highway brings the total number of the cabinets installed in the region to 42 since the Rural Broadband Initiative started. Chorus executive Vanessa Oakley said the latest upgrades should be well received by businesses and residents, given ongoing concern for slow internet speeds in the Appleby area.

Following the upgrade, they should now be able to experience speeds of between 10 and 20 MBPS, depending on the distance to the broadband cabinet.  Residents who live within about 1km of their cabinet should be able to access a VDSL broadband service with speeds in excess of 20 MBPS.  This is the fastest service over Chorus’ existing copper network.

(The Nelson Mail, July 25,2015)

Duke & Cooke Get A New Website!

You may well have noticed by now that we have a new website!  We are now fully mobile responsive- so you can enjoy reading on your tablet and smart phone. We have kept the same domain, so you can still find us just as easily as before. We hope you like the new site and please feel free to leave comments at the bottom of our blog posts.

Thought For The Week

A person who never made a mistake never tried anything new.
Albert Einstein