Great sum­mer not good for mari­nas

Auckland City Harbour News - - NEWS - By JESS LEE

A fine New Zealand sum­mer may have meant many boat­ies were far too busy out on the wa­ter to dock their su­pery­achts at Wyn­yard Quar­ter but Wa­ter­front Auck­land is hop­ing a slow sum­mer will trans­late into a stream of win­ter ac­tiv­ity.

The or­gan­i­sa­tion re­ported a lower than an­tic­i­pated oc­cu­pancy of su­pery­achts at both Silo and Viaduct mari­nas for the last quar­ter of 2012 in a re­port to Auck­land Coun­cil in April.

But Wa­ter­front Auck­land chief ex­ec­u­tive John Dalzell says while oc­cu­pancy at the Viaduct re­mains lower than hoped, Silo Ma­rina is cur­rently op­er­at­ing at about the level the or­gan­i­sa­tion ex­pects af­ter a dry sum­mer sea­son.

‘‘Be­cause of the weather there hasn’t been so many peo­ple in dock. You never quite know what’s go­ing to hap­pen but it’s not in­con­ceiv­able that we might have a busy win­ter.

‘‘The main­te­nance still needs to be done and the fact is that the boats have been out so they’ve got to do it some­time, so log­i­cally we think it’s go­ing to be a slightly busier win­ter than last year.’’

Both mari­nas spe­cialise in ac­com­mo­dat­ing su­pery­achts. Silo Ma­rina has eight berths up to 116 me­tres long with full ser­vic­ing and fu­elling fa­cil­i­ties while Viaduct Ma­rina has 50 berths be­tween 20 and 55m.

Im­prove­ments to the Viaduct’s outer berths and wave re­ten­tion are vi­tal to at­tract­ing more boat­ies to the ma­rina, Mr Dalzell says.

Con­struc­tion of two 90m pon­toons as part of Wa­ter­front Auck­land’s su­pery­acht re­fit and com­mis­sion­ing ma­rina ex­ten­sion is hoped to give Auck­land the abil­ity to main­tain a foothold in the $90 bil­lion global su­pery­acht re­fit in­dus­try. Plans for a 20-hectare marine in­dus­trial site in Hob­sonville, called Yard 37, were given a sec­ond chance by Auck­land Coun­cil’s strat­egy and fi­nance com­mit­tee on May 1.

Auck­land Coun­cil Prop­erty Limited con­ducted a re­view when Yard 37 failed to gen­er­ate the nec­es­sary prop­erty sales.

Three sig­nif­i­cant land sales had to be re­ceived be­fore March 31 for the pro­ject to get the green light but only one was se­cured. If three sales can be reached by the time the uni­tary plan takes ef­fect, which is ex­pected to be in 2016, the area will be­come a mix of 10ha of in­dus­trial and 10ha of res­i­den­tial hous­ing.

There should be no di­rect ef­fects for Wyn­yard Quar­ter whether the pro­ject is given the go ahead or not, Mr Dalzell says.

‘‘We’ve still got the ex­ist­ing busi- ness we’ve got here. It’s all about the scale – if you were do­ing a ma­jor re­fur­bish­ment it would have been eas­ier to go up there but equally if you’re just do­ing in­ter­nal work then it’s quite easy to do the work down here and it’s a lot more con­ve­nient be­cause it’s more cen­tral,’’ Mr Dalzell says.

New Zealand Marine In­dus­try As­so­ci­a­tion ex­ec­u­tive di­rec­tor Peter Bus­field says the marine in­dus­try has re­cov­ered well from the fi­nan­cial cri­sis and this should con­tinue to be re­flected in su­pery­acht oc­cu­pancy.

On May 7, Mr Dalzell and mayor Len Brown un­veiled plans to de­velop a 28,000 square me­tre block of land in Wyn­yard Quar­ter into a new fam­ily-friendly sub­urb com­plete with a five-star ho­tel on the site of the Team New Zealand yacht base.

Photo: JA­SON OXENHAM

Plain sail­ing?:

Wa­ter­front Auck­land is hop­ing for su­pery­acht oc­cu­pancy at its Silo and Viaduct mari­nas to im­prove this win­ter af­ter a dry sum­mer run.

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