News and Publications

Property News - 29 May 2017

Campers spark 'shanty town' fears

Cars and campsites have been abandoned at a popular freedom camping spot in Golden Bay as illegal campers clear out for the winter, leaving piles of rubbish behind.

Dozens of campsites and self-made structures have been abandoned in the rubbish-strewn bush along the riverbank at Reilly St, located behind the Takaka Memorial Library.

Residents are concerned the area is being turned into a 'shanty town' and one has called for a community meeting to take action.

The area has been occupied by up to 400 illegal campers a night during the summer sleeping in their cars and tents along the riverbank, in the car park, and along the side of the road.

(The Nelson Mail, Thursday 25 May 2017)

Low to go as port relocates its office

As development at Port Nelson continues to unfold, the clock has run down for one long-time servant.

Making way for a new 9000m2 facility south of the Quayconnect building, the Port Nelson administration building has relocated from Low St to new offices at the former Nelmac premises on Vickerman St.

The old stevedores building on Wildman Ave, known as ‘‘the white house’’, was also relocated to the same site.

The new offices were built by Scott Construction and designed by local architect firm Jerram, Tocker and Barron. Both firms were also involved in construction of the new Plant and Food Research Centre on Akersten St, which were officially handed over last week.

Port Nelson infrastructure manager Matt McDonald was delighted with the end result, which had taken seven months to complete.

Demolition of the Low Street building was to begin on Wednesday, although according to McDonald, the process would be a low-key undertaking.

With resource consent granted and building consent lodged, site works on the new warehouse are expected to begin in June.

(The Nelson Mail, Thursday 25 May 2017)

From party house to art house

The people who lived in Alan Clarke and Nikki Romney’s Nelson home before them described it as ‘‘like living in a prison’’.

The tiny, run-down 1960s home had been rented out for 25 years and was known locally as a wild party house, but to Clarke and Romney, it had one huge advantage – its location on Wakefield Quay overlooking Nelson’s waterfront.

The couple bought the 78sqm house in 2011 before beginning a complete renovation that left only the original floor and one wall.

The couple originally bought the house to do up and sell on to make a profit. But, as Clarke recounts, ‘‘We’d only been here about two days and decided we were going to stay.’’

(The Nelson Mail, Thursday 25 May 2017)

Queen St upgrade behind schedule

A new, larger stormwater pipe under Queen St in Richmond may be laid in advance of planned staged work as a multimillion-dollar upgrade of the main street slips five weeks behind schedule.

Work is now under way on stage two of the six-stage Queen St upgrade, from the Noel Leeming store to the Cambridge St intersection. Work also continues on stage one of the $11 million project.

Stage one was always touted as the most complicated section of work.

TDC programme delivery manager Russell McGuigan yesterday told councillors that contractors were making ‘‘good progress’’.

A new water main, laid the length of the CBD section of Queen St as the first major job of the project, was due to ‘‘go live’’ on Sunday.

The upgrade of the main street is part of a wider central Richmond infrastructure project for which TDC has budgeted $26.8m in its 2015-25 Long Term Plan.

It comes after floods devastated the CBD in 2011 and 2013.

(The Nelson Mail, Friday 26 May 2017)

Underspend helps fuel $10m operating surplus

A likely multimillion-dollar underspend on engineering projects is partly why Tasman District Council is tipped to end the financial year with a $10.4 million operating surplus.

The council’s March 2017 quarterly financial update shows a year-end forecast operating surplus of almost $8.9 million.

However, in his report on the council’s financial position, senior management accountant, Matthew McGlinchey, says the April results indicate a further $1.5m surplus on top of the $8.9m.

The drivers of the ‘‘favourable variance’’ include the harvesting of the Borlase Forest a year ahead of schedule along with lower interest rates and less capital expenditure.

An analysis of the capital expenditure shows a forecast underspend of $22.3m at the end of the financial year even though some projects are tipped to go over budget. The biggest underspend is in the engineering department, which is expected to be $21.4m under its $47.15m budget.

Overall, the TDC net debt at the end of March was at $119m, down $9.2m on the 2015-16 position. It is tipped to be $134.5m at the end of June, $31.9m less than the expected net debt position in the 2016-17 Annual Plan.

(The Nelson Mail, Friday 26 May 2017)

21 Workers under one roof

Upset residents in a quiet Motueka street are blaming the lack of regional and national regulation for a neighbourhood home being used to house 21 workers from Vanuatu.

Teece Drive resident Trevor Rowse said the situation was not the RSE (Recognised Seasonal Employer) workers’ fault, nor was it a noise or litter issue. He blamed Tasman District Council.

The property is not unique. A number of Motueka homes, near Nelson, have been converted in recent years to house large numbers of RSE and migrant workers, many of who work in the horticulture industry.

The council’s environment and planning manager, Dennis Bush-King, said to all intents and purposes the property was a house.

He doubted the council would be able to regulate similar properties without capturing a mass of other rental houses, including holiday homes.

Residential homes were predominantly used to house RSE workers nationwide with all deductions from workers’ wages, including rents, assessed. All new RSE worker accommodation was inspected and had to meet Residential Tenancies Act and WorkSafe guidelines, he said.

A report on the property will be part of Tasman District Council’s June 1 Environment and Planning Committee meeting.

(The Nelson Mail, Saturday 27 May 2017)

Motueka Library study gets nod

Backers of a proposed development of Motueka Library are rejoicing after the first stage of the project was given the green light.

Agreement to carry out a feasibility study on the development in the next financial year came on Thursday, just moments before Tasman District councillors adopted the Annual Plan 2017-18.

The feasibility study will look at the options of redeveloping the library on its existing Pah St site or relocating it beside Decks Reserve, possibly incorporating other services such as the TDC office.

Along with the agreement to carry out the feasibility study in 2017-18, the council on Thursday committed to additional funding of up to $50,000 from the 2016-17 operating surplus, which is expected to exceed $10 million.

(The Nelson Mail, Saturday 27 May 2017)

Work on Saxton Velodrome ploughing on

While a victory lap is close for the Saxton Velodrome, the race is on to secure last-minute funds and beat the winter weather.

Built on land owned by the Tasman District Council, who are managing the project, the velodrome will include a 333-metre banked track and a 300m flat track and will be a connection to local cycleway networks. It will also feature a cycle safety arena to teach children the skills required to ride on the road.

The project is being funded by Nelson (43 per cent) and Tasman (37 per cent) councils, which are contributing 80 per cent of the total cost. The Saxton Velodrome Trust is charged with raising the remaining 20 per cent build cost and ongoing maintenance.

Construction was in its final stages, with top soiling and finishing touches on the banking underway ahead of concreting and sealing of the track next month.

The project is expected to be completed within six weeks. However, timing of the weather, availability of specialised machinery and funding have been identified as key aspects in getting the project over the line.

(The Nelson Mail, Saturday 27 May 2017)

Thought for the Week

If your ship doesn't come in swim out to meet it