Raiha St hous­ing de­vel­oper still hope­ful of suc­cess

Kapi-Mana News - - NEWS - By KRIS DANDO

The de­vel­oper of a pro­posed $ 45 mil­lion af­ford­able hous­ing project in Raiha St has given him­self a dead­line to get it un­der­way.

Phillip McNeil un­veiled plans late last year for a scheme to build 159 ecofriendly, af­ford­able homes on a for­mer wrecker’s yard at 54 Raiha St, op­po­site Hospi­tal Rd. Homes are ex­pected to cost be­tween $230,000 and $320,000.

He needs the land to be re­zoned from in­dus­trial to res­i­den­tial and is fac­ing up to $2 mil­lion in re­source con­sent fees from Porirua City Coun­cil.

Mr McNeil had hoped to get the green light in Jan­uary, but said last week his com­pany was still to sub­mit con­sents or ap­ply for the plan change.

‘‘We’re go­ing through a process and there’s no guar­an­tee of suc­cess, but we’re hope­ful,’’ he said.

‘‘I be­lieve in this project and want to pro­duce af­ford­able homes that people in Porirua can be proud of. It ticks a lot of boxes — it’s close to the city cen­tre, ameni­ties, trans­port and the hospi­tal.’’

While he had dis­cussed the project with Porirua City coun­cil­lors – ‘‘the feed­back has been very pos­i­tive’’ – get­ting it in front of coun­cil of­fi­cers was go­ing to take some time.

He has given him­self un­til Sept- ember to get con­struc­tion un­der­way.

‘‘Our sur­vey­ors and plan­ners are work­ing on it right now, but the [Re­source Man­age­ment] Act can make this an ex­pen­sive and time-con­sum­ing process.

‘‘There are bar­ri­ers, but I get the feel­ing people want this to work.’’

Porirua City Coun­cil’s man­ager of en­vi­ron­ment and city plan­ning, Matt Tr­lin, con­firmed no pri­vate plan change or re­source con­sent ap­pli­ca­tion had been re­ceived.

‘‘The ball is in the de­vel­oper’s court to de­velop a for­mal pro­posal for the site so it can be as­sessed on its mer­its,’’ he said.

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