New vi­sion for an un­used prop­erty

Eastern Courier - - YOUR LOCAL NEWS - IMO­GEN NEALE

A va­cant East Auck­land site that was once home to a school ‘‘of last re­sort’’ could be trans­formed into a re­tire­ment vil­lage.

The seven-acre sec­tion at 25 Thurston Place was once Waimokoia Res­i­den­tial School. The school for trou­bled stu­dents was closed in 2010 fol­low­ing a long his­tory of prob­lems in­clud­ing sex­ual and psy­cho­log­i­cal abuse in its ‘‘time-out’’ room.

Two years later, the lo­cal com­mu­nity vo­cif­er­ously op­posed the Min­istry of Ed­u­ca­tion’s pro­posal to rein­vent the site as a school for up to 100 chil­dren in Child, Youth and Fam­ily care.

That plan was axed and last year the Crown re­port­edly sold the Buck­lands Beach prop­erty to an iwi for $12 mil­lion.

The BeGroup New Zealand Ltd chief prop­erty of­fi­cer Brett Meyer says his com­pany bought the prop­erty in May 2016.

The Auck­land Coun­cil last week heard a re­source con­sent ap­pli­ca­tion from Be Half Moon Bay Hold­ings Ltd to de­velop the site in two stages.

Stage one in­cludes 69 re­tire­ment apart­ments and ameni­ties such as a heated swim­ming pool, cafe area and a two-lane bowl­ing green.

Meyer says for the past year the de­vel­op­ment com­pany has been con­sult­ing with im­me­di­ate neigh­bours, the board of Pi­geon Moun­tain Pri­mary School and the coun­cil.

CHRIS SKEL­TON / STUFF

The old Waimokoia Res­i­den­tial School site could be­come a re­tire­ment vil­lage if a prop­sal gets the green light.

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