Iconic landmark up for sale again
One of the most iconic buildings in Auckland is on the market - and it’s set to go for a hefty price.
The 102-year-old former Ponsonby Post Office on the corner of St Marys Rd and College Hill was put up for sale this month.
Real estate agents are expecting it to go for more than $5 million when tenders close on November 27.
It is the second time it has been up for grabs in 18 months, with the capital value jumping almost $1m in that time. It is now valued at $4.7m.
St Marys Bay Association chairman Tony Skelton says it is an integral part of the neighbourhood.
He has lived in the area for more than 40 years and remembers when it was a fully-fledged post office.
‘‘I would put it in the same category as the Ferry Building, the Civic Theatre and even, dare I say it, the Auckland Town Hall. I would be very keen to make sure that it stays as it is.’’
The post office was constructed in 1912 and the clock was added a year later with funding from Ponsonby residents. The building has been restored and is on the heritage list with an A-grade seismic rating.
And it comes with a colourful history - in 1920 the postmaster was shot in an internationally infamous murder.
Herne Bay Residents’ Association chairwoman Christine Cavanagh says the new owner will have to embrace the history and special character of the area.
‘‘You couldn’t possibly not have the post office building there. It’s integral to the history and the heritage of the area.’’
Ponsonby Business Association’s Vivienne Rosenberg says she would love to see a business or owner that stays long-term, especially one that will light up the building at night.
‘‘We’re looking forward to helping a new owner or tenant to write the next chapter in Ponsonby.’’
Ray White Commercial managing director Bruce Whillans says the building came on to the market after the Belgian Beer Cafe ended its lease this year after 10 years on the ground floor of the building.
The overseas-based owner decided it was a good time to sell, Whillans says.
‘‘Obviously it’s an iconic building on a strong corner location. The interest has been really good.’’
Heritage sale: The former Ponsonby post office building is up for grabs for the second time in 18 months.
Old days: The post office in 1924.