Big Wellsford block borders town centre

11:37 AM Wednesday November 23, 2016 Colin Taylor

An aerial view of the 27ha block of land for sale looking towards Wellsford’s business district.

A 27ha block of Mixed Use zoned land bordering Wellsford’s town centre, about 70kms north of Auckland, has two areas respectively zoned for retail/business and light industrial – along with provision for lifestyle blocks and residential subdivision.

“Both of the sites are located off El Harma Rd, which directly feeds onto State Highway 1,” says John Barnett of Bayleys Warkworth, who is marketing the Rodney St property for sale by tender closing at 4pm on December 8.  

He says the retail/business designated land of 1549sq m was granted resource consent in 2008 to develop a 1800sq m retail building or bulk warehouse site off El Harma St.

“It certainly is a prime position for retail, just off the main road where there is plenty of parking,” Barnett says.

“The other 7150sq m area, zoned for light industrial, is behind Hood St. It has a building platform which was engineered by the previous owner for the expansion of a factory. Although that did not occur, the site is now suitable, once building consent has been granted, for the construction of an industrial or commercial building with the hard foundation work already completed.

“This site is situated very close to state Highway 1, which would provide easy transportation of goods into and out of the site,” Barnett says. 

“With commercial land rates in Wellsford currently a fraction of the cost of those in Auckland, we believe a variety of different users would find these site very attractive for operating their businesses.”

He says the NZ Transport Agency is due to confirm that construction of the first stage of the Puhoi to Wellsford toll road and announce the indicative Wellsford route in early 2017, with plans to lodge a Notice of Requirement to protect the Warkworth-Wellsford route by 2018. “This road of National Significance would provide a direct and undisrupted access to the Auckland market.”

Barnett says the property is currently a cattle-grazing block and zoned under multiple land-use designations, encompassing residential, countryside living for bigger lifestyle blocks and industrial.

RetailIndutrial Zones.jpg

The retail/business and light industrial sites identified on this elevated view of part of the Wellsford land block. 

“The dual residential zonings allow for the construction of new residential suburbs containing a mix of medium density to lifestyle block configurations and the freehold landholding already has residential dwellings on several sides of its boundary,” he says.

The flat to gently undulating land has multiple potential entrance points off Rodney St, Worker Rd, Tomas St, Totara View and El Harma St. 

“The property’s location immediately behind Wellsford’s main street and with a northerly-facing aspect would support Auckland Council’s drive to increase the population of the region’s satellite townships,” Barnett says.

“The template use for this Wellsford site has been the huge growth in residential subdivision activity in and around Warkworth over the past four years. As Greater Auckland has grown, the city’s expanding residential urban ‘belt’ has pushed northward.

“First it was the evolution of Silverdale in the early 2000s, with the emergence of Millwater as a planned new suburb of scale. Then as the pace of residential construction and occupancy increased around what was previously a rural township, land became scarcer there so developers looked north toward Warkworth.

“After Warkworth, Wellsford is automatically the next step in the path north. The residential development potential of this block being offered for sale would ideally reflect a visionary new owner who can see a growing Wellsford over the coming decades.

“The 27ha block offers a future owner or developer a degree of risk-diversification by sustaining a potential mix of residential, lifestyle and commercial or light industrial properties – all of which could be brought on stream in various stages as part of a long-term roll out.”

Barnett says the opening of the Puhoi tunnel express highway in 2009 has considerably shortened travelling times to and from Auckland – making the town more attractive to home owners to relocate.

“The on-going expansion of the State Highway One motorway will continue to bring Wellsford into play as Auckland’s northernmost satellite town with all of the real estate infrastructure required to sustain a growth in population,” he says. .
Barnett says holding income on the property could be derived from continuing to graze the property or leasing the farm land out to a local farmer.