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Council to consult on expanded property role

MEDIA RELEASE
12 March 2004

Council to consult on expanded property role and waterfront purchase

Auckland City today voted unanimously to begin consultation with the public over plans to take a more active role in property, beginning with the waterfront.

The council’s control over development in the city is currently limited to its regulatory capacity (for example granting resource consents) and the spending decisions it makes about things like roading and parks.

The council believes it needs to take a more active role in property and proposes setting up a new enterprise board to ensure development in the city is of a good quality and focussed on the needs of Aucklanders.

“As landowner the council would be able to exercise a greater influence over what gets built in key areas to ensure developments are appropriate to their location, well designed and socially, economically and environmentally sustainable,” said Councillor Scott Milne, chair of the council’s waterfront working party.

“The urgent first priority for this new entity would be to try securing a large area of the city’s waterfront in public ownership so that the council can encourage positive development in the area, including increased public open spaces. There are many other opportunities for this new expanded property role including developments in key growth areas.”

The council will be consulting on its proposal to:

- take a more active role in the development of key areas
- buy Westhaven and Hobson West Marinas, which are up for sale
- negotiate with Ports of Auckland to purchase other waterfront areas
- consider a range of funding options for the proposal which could cost between $100 and $400 million depending on the properties purchased.

The council will enter a bid for Westhaven and Hobson West Marinas before 30 March to meet the tender deadline but it has been made clear that this is conditional on public consultation.

Public consultation will commence on March 22. Further details will be released next week.

Ends

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