Billion dollar bonanza

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Artists impression of new build for Auckland CBD

New Zealand’s largest private property developer is planning projects worth more than $1 billion.

Culum Manson, a director of Parnell-headquartered Mansons TCLM, said the business was the busiest it had been in its 40 year history.

“We’ve got over $1 billion of work planned and not yet announced, including a $120 million asset and a $210 million asset, both in the CBD,” Manson said.

The $1 billion-plus of new work was the result of the need for tenants to upgrade their office space.

“We’re thinking about who might need upgrading in the next few years,” he said of the new projects.

The family firm’s biggest scheme is the $675 million 30-level office tower and 125-room hotel tower at 46 Albert St on the site where the Herald has been published for 152 years.

“The biggest project we have on is Albert St,” he said of the site spanning Mills Lane, Albert St, Wyndham St and Swanson St. Buildings there are now being progressively vacated by about 850 staff for NZME Central, Mansons’ 151 Victoria St premises.

No naming rights have been announced for that new five-star block but that is expected soon when the top floor tenancy lease is announced.

Law firm Meredith Connell has also leased space in the building.

Early last month, Prime Minister John Key officially opened NZME Central, acknowledging the rapidly changing nature of media and the importance of the shift into the new premises.

Manson said planning work for the new buildings on the Herald site was under way.

“We could start demolition of 46 Albert St [at the] end of the first quarter next year, although I’ve got to say it’s not a priority at the moment because we’re still focused on finishing off 151 [Victoria St West] and getting started with all these other jobs,” he said.

“Also, we’re still working with Auckland Transport and Auckland Council on finalising the resource consent for the old Herald site and that’s taken longer than we anticipated, mainly around transport implications of the City Rail Link and a whole lot of moving parts that need to be considered.

“It’s frustrating but we’re all living in the same city and we’re all got to deal with it.”

A Colliers International’s Auckland office vacancy survey showed strong demand and the lowest overall vacancy rate recorded since the studies started. Colliers said it was not just the CBD and fringes which displayed strong demand, but office vacancies had also dropped on the North Shore, Mt Wellington, Penrose and throughout east Auckland.

Source:

  • Anne Gibson
  • NZ Herald

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