Bal­moral com­plex wel­comed

Central Leader - - FRONT PAGE - By EMMA WHIT­TAKER

SAY good­bye to the big red box on Bal­moral Rd.

A cafe and apart­ments are in­cluded in The Ware­house’s plans for a ma­jor re­de­vel­op­ment on the site.

A two-build­ing, 7130 square me­tre com­plex in­clud­ing The Ware­house, 34 apart­ments, and 234 car park­ing spa­ces will be built if the re­tail gi­ant’s prop­erty com­pany, El­damos In­vest­ments, is granted re­source con­sent by Auck­land Coun­cil.

The Bal­moral Ware­house is due to close this month and will be de­mol­ished along with a fruit and veg­etable store and cof­fee shop, the Bal­moral Rd BP ser­vice sta­tion, and a house at 16 Rock­lands Ave to make way for the com­plex if the pro­posal goes ahead.

The Ware­house is work­ing through a na­tion­wide pro­gramme to re­view and mod­ernise its stores.

‘‘It will en­hance the en­vi­ron­ment of the site con­sid­er­ably,’’ a spokesper­son for the re­tailer says.

The com­pany is work­ing through a con­sul­ta­tion process with stake­hold­ers.

An ap­pli­ca­tion has also been made to re­zone part of the site from res­i­den­tial to busi­ness.

This ap­pli­ca­tion was first no­ti­fied in 2010 and 106 sub­mis­sions were made ask­ing that it be de­clined. Six were in sup­port.

It was put on hold un­til the coun­cil re­ceived a traf­fic re­port in Novem­ber and is now be­ing reno­ti­fied.

The plans are draw­ing a ten­ta­tive thumbs up from Al­bert-Eden Lo­cal Board chair­man Peter Haynes.

‘‘Every­body has agreed that Bal­moral is a bit run down, if you take a wider view and look at the in­ter­ests of the area as a whole, this pro­posal looks like just the sort of de­vel­op­ment that will give it a shot in the arm.

‘‘I was very much op­posed to the Bal­moral McDon­ald’s – I don’t think that did any­thing for the area,’’ he says.

‘‘But the ad­di­tion of some qual­ity well-de­signed apart­ments and a vastly im­proved Ware­house I think will do a lot to en­hance Bal­moral.’’

The new hous­ing in­cluded in the pro­posal helps give it legs, Mr Haynes says. ‘‘I would like to em­pha­sise that the lo­cal board hasn’t come to a fi­nal de­ci­sion and that a top pri­or­ity will be en­sur­ing the lo­cal peo­ple are taken care of.’’

The board is still wait­ing on a re­port about traf­fic im­pacts.

Photo: EMMA WHIT­TAKER

Golden op­por­tu­nity: A large scale re­de­vel­op­ment of The Ware­house Bal­moral could be what the run-down site needs, Al­bert-Eden Lo­cal Board chair­man Peter Haynes says.

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