New town centre to transform Kumeu

2:48 PM Monday July 25, 2016 True Commercial

An aerial view of the 10.6sq m development site at 94-104 Main Rd, Kumeu.

More than 10ha of land in Kumeu, with an approved development concept plan and earthworks underway for a new town centre, is one of the trophy offerings for sale in Bayleys’ latest Total Property portfolio.

Located at 94-104 Main Rd, the 106,000sq m site offers an immediate opportunity for a developer to become part of Auckland’s growth story in one of the fastest growing parts of the region, says James Hill of Bayleys’ Auckland office.

“Much of the time-consuming work has already been done for this project with a development concept plan drawn up and resource consent obtained for a substantial commercial and residential mixed-use development on the bulk of the site. Extensive earthworks are under way and will continue during the sale process, including installing services such as mains water and sewage reticulation.”

Hill is marketing the property in conjunction with Bayleys Auckland colleagues Sunil Bhana and Mike Houlker. It is up for sale as one parcel by tender closing August 11, unless sold earlier by negotiation.

Hill says the purchaser could continue to implement the development concept plan without the need for fresh resource consents, although building consents would be required. “The earthworks are well advanced so the next owner has an edge responding to Auckland’s strong market demand for new commercial and residential buildings.”

The approved development concept includes:

Nine commercial lots from 634sq to 3361sq m and totaling 1.76ha of land, with six consented for retail, office and other commercial uses such as service stations. The remaining three lots are consented for live/work activities with commercial uses permitted on the ground floor and apartments above. These lots are located on or close to Main Rd/State Highway 16, running through the centre of Kumeu adjacent to a New World supermarket.

Sixteen residential “super lots” ranging from 844sq m to 3361sq m. Totaling 2.5078ha, these are located behind the commercial buildings in a park-like setting. They are consented for 172 residential units comprising apartments and terraced housing.

Nine reserve lots throughout the development ranging from 967sq m to 1.63ha total just over 4.5ha. They include a 20-metre-wide esplanade reserve, adjacent to the Kumeu River bordering the southern boundary of the property. It will incorporate a public walkway and cycle track and stormwater basins.

Hill says while the commercial and residential components of the consented development are reasonably intensive, most buildings will only be two-to-three storeys high and offset by a roughly equal amount of public reserve, open space land. “It’s a very pleasant place to live and work.”

Almost a hectare of land (in three titles) is outside the development concept plan, providing additional options for the next owner, Hill says. “Current owners have been keen to establish a new Farmers Market to replace the old one that has closed. The previous market was popular with the Kumeu community. Another option is using part of the site to create something similar to a Ponsonby Central — a mix of food and beverage outlets plus eclectic retail. This would be in an elevated position at the rear of the property with nice views out over neighbouring bush and pastures.”

The property was rezoned for mixed use development by Auckland Council in 2011 after a former owner and Foodstuffs — which built the 3000sq m supermarket on the neighbouring 2ha site — instigated a private plan change for the two sites.

True Commercial - Kumeu town centre - artist%27s impression.JPG

Artist’s concept of the new Kumeu town centre on SH 16.  

Bhana says the plan change envisaged a comprehensively developed local centre at 94-104 Main Rd, integrated into the adjoining Kumeu Village and servicing the Kumeu and neighbouring Huapai area. It envisaged up to 20,000sq m of retail and other commercial uses and up to 150 residential units.

“Given the huge demand for housing at present, the residential component has been increased and the resource consent permits a maximum of 211 dwellings spread across both the residential lots and the commercial live/work lots. There is also consent for 12,750sq m of commercial buildings and a townsquare.”

Bhana says the SH16 location favours commercial growth.

“A major contributor to this will be the completion of the Western Ring Route next year, an alternative to SH1 and the Auckland Harbour Bridge to Albany via SH20, SH16 and SH18. This will benefit the north-west by allowing direct motorway access to and from the airport and Manukau as well as channelling a larger volume of traffic to and from the area.”

Kumeu-Huapai, about 25km northwest of Auckland’s CBD, is identified by Auckland Council as a centre for growth in the western part of the city with the population forecast to increase more than four-fold in the 10 years to 2021

“It will be an important part of the solution to accommodating Auckland’s expansion and consequently the council and the government are investing heavily in the northwest to support Auckland’s growing population as it expands westward,” says Bhana. “Mains water and wastewater services are being introduced and upgraded in Kumeu and the north western motorway extension to Brigham Creek Rd brings it within about 5 km of Kumeu.”

Houlker says with the Kumeu-Huapai area now much more accessible thanks to motorway improvements, which put it within a 15-minute drive of the two major metropolitan centres of Albany and Westgate, it’s now no longer a sleepy rural service town.

“An increasing number of businesses and residents are being attracted by the location, with many amenities now in easy reach, and the fact that housing and commercial accommodation is still relatively affordable compared with many other parts of Auckland.

“The future Kumeu will offer a range of quality housing options, significant employment opportunities, good freight access, increased public transport options and a vibrant town centre, which this property will form the core of,” he says.