Hard News by Russell Brown

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Hard News: About the King's Arms (updated)

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  • Brent Jackson,

    Probably worth mentioning that the SHA legislation expires in September, so I'd guess the developer has included the Kings Arms property since it is a desirable site, and it will not be possible to develop under the SHA rules unless it is included now.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 614 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown, in reply to Brent Jackson,

    That’s the most plausible explanation I’ve heard.

    I've called the developers and they're calling me back, possibly.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 22754 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown,

    Here's the Housing Accords and Special Housing Areas Act 2013

    The parts that expire inSeptember are those to do with establishing new SHAs and the rest rolls on until 2018.

    So, yes, the 36 SHAs announced last week were the last under the act.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 22754 posts Report Reply

  • Matthew Poole, in reply to Russell Brown,

    The parts that expire inSeptember are those to do with establishing new SHAs and the rest rolls on until 2018.

    Does that mean the designation also expires in 2018 unless utilised?

    Auckland • Since Mar 2007 • 4097 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown,

    I had a brief conversation with Kelly McEwan, the director of development at Urban Collective.

    He wouldn’t comment on whether he’d spoken to Maureen Gordon or discussed a sale, but said that if Maureen says she’s not selling “then there’s nothing to worry about”.

    He did note that development controls switch to the Unitary Plan later in the year and that those are similar but more stringent. (Specifically, Sections 17 and 18, which cover the designation of new SHAs, expire in September. So the 36 SHAs announced last week are the last to be designated.)

    “People in our industry apply for consents and do things all the time,” he added. “It’s just a zoning thing.”

    He noted that the KA’s carpark might be a good development site.

    It would be a fair guess that Urban Collective wanted to get in under the SHA rules and applied for the designation in the hope of a acquiring the property in the next couple of years.

    Vernon Tava of the Waitemata Local Board is getting back to me soon, but did note that anyone can apply for a resource consent over any property.

    Note: Luke Appleby at TVNZ has talked to Maureen and says she stressed a "never say never" approach and said her position "might change".

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 22754 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown, in reply to Matthew Poole,

    Does that mean the designation also expires in 2018 unless utilised?

    I think so.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 22754 posts Report Reply

  • Rich of Observationz,

    If Auckland continues along the more cars/more sprawl/more motorways track they'll need the land in a few years for a future stage of widening the North Western motorway.

    (The M25 in England is up to 6+6 lanes in places and still jamming solid).

    Back in Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 5550 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown,

    I checked the title on the other two properties in the SHA, 11 and 13 Karaka Street.

    It sold in August last year to:

    Alhan Ali Elsayed Selem
    Kiwi Trustee Services Limited
    Mohamed Selim
    Susan Anne Bierre

    They're investors who seem to have other ventures in common. Alhan Ali Essayed Selem set up a property development company this year.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 22754 posts Report Reply

  • Matthew Poole, in reply to Rich of Observationz,

    The M25 in England is up to 6+6 lanes in places and still jamming solid

    The southern approach to the Auckland Harbour Bridge is already 5+5, and I believe the plan for the Northwestern is 6+6 through to Te Atatu once the causeway widening is completed.

    Auckland • Since Mar 2007 • 4097 posts Report Reply

  • Scott G,

    Building on the parking lot, whilst a good use of space would be pretty terrible for the KA. It gets pretty loud in there sometimes and I can't imagine apartment dwellers that close to sound source wouldn't complain about it.

    I'm all for density and brownfield development but I can't see how developing the car park wouldn't lead directly to the KA being developed too.

    I guess at the end it's Maureen and her partner's decision what to do with the property, though I will miss the place if it goes. Too many amazing nights there.

    Since Mar 2016 • 10 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown,

    Some more ...

    While anyone can apply for an SHA or any other content, the criteria in this case require that "the landowner's views be sought".

    So I don't think Maureen was entirely in the dark about the designation being sought, and I don't think she objected to it.

    But if something's going to happen to the King's Arms, it's going to happen soon. With the expiry of the key sections of the Act, resource consent applications for a development must be in by September. And if you were planning such an application, you'd be working on plans now.

    In terms of what could be built there, the "special height overlay" under the Unitary Plan will allow up to eight stories on that site. But the Special Housing Area limit is only six stories, so at the moment, it looks like six stories would be the plan.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 22754 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown,

    And yet more, from Newshub:

    Owner Maureen Gordon says the support has been "very flattering", but it's all very much ado about nothing.

    "You never say never, because some things could change direction and you're put in that position," she told Newshub. "But we're not willingly going out there and trying to sell the Kings Arms -- at all."

    In fact she's currently overseeing upgrades to the Kings Arms' sports bar, which wouldn't happen if there were plans to knock the whole thing down.

    So how did the site end up being accepted as a special housing area?

    Ms Gordon says she recently became aware the deadline for registering addresses was approaching, and wanted to future-proof the location in the event the Kings Arms does shut its doors one day.

    "There's always agents knocking on the door, they're always scouting around. The cranes are getting closer all the time. They made me aware of the fact that the council were changing things and I should get my application in."

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 22754 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha, in reply to Russell Brown,

    wanted to future-proof the location

    Yeah, I don't believe this does what she intended then, as SHA options expire very soon. Perhaps needs some better advice?

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 19686 posts Report Reply

  • Christopher Dempsey, in reply to Matthew Poole,

    Once you have SHA, you then need to apply for Qualifying Development Consent for the actual buildings. You have limited time to do this under legislation, compared to 5 years under RMA. The intent in the SHA act is to build, and build sooner, not later.

    Parnell / Tamaki-Auckland… • Since Sep 2008 • 659 posts Report Reply

  • Christopher Dempsey,

    Note; anyone can apply for consent over any property. In reality, one would never do it unless you had reasonable prospects of exercising that consent.

    In that vein, anyone can make a submission on a District or Regional Plan about any property. Which is where we got our 'out of scope' (a mis-nomer) debacle from.

    Parnell / Tamaki-Auckland… • Since Sep 2008 • 659 posts Report Reply

  • Jason Kemp,

    I’m guessing that as the value of the land goes up the rates also go up and that starts to make the returns from the music venue business look fairly slim. I wonder if there is scope for certain venues to be given cultural character ratings that allow them to continue for specified uses in return for some form of targeted rates relief?

    Just an idea. Clearly KA is a cultural icon and well regarded by many of us but the reality is that as property values rise the pressure to change usage to earn more returns must be quite real.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 364 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha, in reply to Jason Kemp,

    I wonder if there is scope for certain venues to be given cultural character ratings that allow them to continue for specified uses in return for some form of targeted rates relief?

    Sounds promising, so long as what counts as culture is not decided mainly by those who favour classical, ballet and oil paintings - or ballsports - over other forms.

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 19686 posts Report Reply

  • Ian Dalziel, in reply to Jason Kemp,

    some form of targeted rates relief?

    plus

    so long as what counts as culture is not decided mainly by those who favour classical, ballet and oil paintings – or ballsports – over other forms.

    ...mates rates?

    Christchurch • Since Dec 2006 • 7889 posts Report Reply

  • Lee B,

    Since Oct 2010 • 2 posts Report Reply

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