‘Housing crisis to rival Auck’
Porirua could be in for a ‘‘housing crisis to rival Auckland’’, a resident says as he and his neighbours are evicted to make way for hundreds of new houses.
Paul Nelson and his family have been given notice to leave their rented property on the old Kenepuru Hospital grounds.
He estimates 40 families, and a childcare centre, are now looking for rental properties in the Porirua and Wellington area, but says the prices are well out of reach.
‘‘Where are the houses for people who are working but aren’t rich? We’ll all be sleeping in our cars and tents while all our pets are in the pounds.
‘‘I don’t see why they can’t build their houses around the properties we already live in...they’ve forgotten about the little people.’’
Nelson said his family needed to stay in the area for work and their children’s schooling and he had been checking Trade Me every day.
‘‘This place here [Kenepuru] was where people could find emergency housing. There’s nothing out there now.’’
Another neighbour, who didn’t want to be named, said he was worried about his elderly parents who had lived at the site for eight years.
‘‘My dad is 72 and he shouldn’t be worrying about this. He should be retiring now.’’
The Ngati Toa iwi was given the opportunity to buy back 42-hectares of former Kenepuru Hospital land as part of its $75 million treaty settlement, signed off in 2012.
Ngati Toa Rangatira executive director Matiu Rei said he sympathised with the tenants, but helping them find new homes was not the iwi’s problem.
‘‘People have known for some time that this day was going to arrive and now the time is nigh.’’
Rei said Ngati Toa planned to build 400 to 500 houses on the Kenepuru land as part of a joint venture with Carrus Corporation.
‘‘This will be the sort of new development to help with the problem of housing.
‘‘It’s great for the region, it’s well connected to transport and the off ramp for Transmission Gully and we will be making walking paths to the central city,’’ he said.
He said there was still a lot of planning to be done, but construction would begin in three months with the demolition work.
Tenants of the former Kenepuru Hospital grounds have been told to leave.