Commercial development a success
Hutt City Council-owned property company Urban Plus Limited has just completed its ﬁrst commercial project, Fairﬁ eld Waters, a medium-density development of 20 two-storey townhouses, single-storey homes and two-storey terraced housing.
The development is already sold out and is just the ﬁrst phase of an ambitious plan to fund 70 new pensioner housing units by 2020.
Urban Plus Limited was established in 2007 and is a wholly owned by Hutt City Council and operates as a Council-Controlled Trading Organisation (CCTO).
Urban Plus has ownership of the Council’s portfolio of social housing targeted towards the lowincome elderly of the Hutt Valley. It also provides specialist property services, advice and facilities management to Council and is involved in a range of property development activities.
Developments such as Fairﬁeld Waters are being sold to the public market then proceeds invested in social housing.
The project was designed by Solari Architects and built by three building companies: Key Housing, which constructed the six stand-alone homes, Friday Homes, which built the two-bedroom units, and David Reid Homes, that completed the three-bedroom townhouses.
Urban Plus senior development manager Daniel Moriarty says that by splitting the project over three building companies it helps mitigate risk and also assists with rapid construction.
He says the contemporary design of the development proved popular resulting in a good mix of looks that still tied in well with each other.
Urban Plus Chief Executive Craig Walton says Fairﬁ eld Waters is a pioneer of medium-density residential development in Lower Hutt and tests the market’s appetite for relatively new types of housing.
“Fairﬁeld Waters’ success in attracting healthy buyer interest proves to us that people’s tastes in housing are evolving. It’s an example of how highquality, architecturally designed housing can be applied to a relatively modest area of land and still offers a very high quality of life for residents.”
Urban Plus is going to market with a 24 standalone three-bedroom townhouse developments in Avalon.
Called Parkview, the development offers homes ranging in size from 118sqm to 146qsm with lot sizes of around 250sqm to 444sqm.
Located adjacent to Avalon Park and a tennis club with a golf course and the Hutt River nearby as well as State Highway One and Two, Parkview is well situated.
The low maintenance homes and sections are aimed at a wide range of the market from ﬁrsttime buyers to retirees wanting to downsize. Urban Plus also has an intensive townhouse development in the concept stage in Epuni.
Daniel says these projects will enable Urban Plus, which also plans to develop other parcels of land on the valley ﬂ oor, to start building pensioner housing for the rental market with projects due to start in 12 to 18 months.
He says that as a CCTO, Urban Plus is able to use business acumen to make the best possible ﬁnancial return, while at the same time using its public sector knowledge and expertise to ensure it meets clients’ social objectives.
Daniel says a central aim of the service provided by Urban Plus is to foster community among residents – a group who can sometimes experience loneliness and a lack of social interaction in their later years.
“There is big demand for elderly housing in the Hutt Valley and this will only increase in years to come.
“The overall aim of all these projects is for the greater good of the pensioners, that’s the end goal.”