Fund­ing for When­u­a­pai homes

North Harbour News - - YOUR PAPER, YOUR PLACE - CAL­LUM MCGIL­LIVRAY AND HAMISH MCNI­COL

The Govern­ment will loan Auck­land Coun­cil $300 mil­lion to ac­cel­er­ate the con­struc­tion of thou­sands of homes.

But two fur­ther in­fra­struc­ture projects of at least that value were still to be an­nounced over the com­ing weeks.

Tues­day’s loan in­cluded five road­ing and five wa­ter projects des­ig­nated by the coun­cil as ‘‘pri­or­ity, fast track-ini­tia­tives’’.

Auck­land Coun­cil would be lent $300 mil­lion in­ter­est-free be­tween 2019 and 2017 from the Hous­ing In­fra­struc­ture Fund (HIF) which would be re­paid within ten years.

This would al­low the con­struc­tion of 10,500 homes in green­field ar­eas in When­u­a­pai and Red­hills, north-west of Auck­land City, to be ‘‘brought for­ward’’, mayor Phil Goff said.

Goff said the loan was most of what the coun­cil had asked for, but was only a par­tial an­swer to Auck­land’s needs.

The coun­cil was con­strained by how much debt it could take on, and the Govern­ment un­der­stood the chal­lenge this pre­sented when it came to fund­ing much­needed in­fra­struc­ture projects.

Finance Min­is­ter Steven Joyce had fore­shad­owed there would be a fur­ther an­nounce­ment about this in the com­ing weeks. Joyce said the coun­cil had made it clear they wanted to look at other mod­els out­side of the HIF to sup­port some ad­di­tional ap­pli­ca­tions.

The Whenu­pai Struc­ture Plan an­tic­i­pated be­tween 8100-10,700 dwellings would be built over the next 10-20 years. In stage one about 1800 dwellings could be built be­tween 2017-2021.

The coun­cil’s HIF would fund a $2m stormwa­ter sys­tem; a $10m Trig Rd up­grade and re­align­ment; a new $18m bridge cross­ing to the West Har­bour ferry ter­mi­nal; a waste­water pump sta­tion at West­gate, and $60m for stage two of the North­ern In­ter­cep­tor waste­water pipe.

How­ever, as pre­vi­ously re­ported, stage two of When­u­a­pai couldn’t start un­til ad­di­tional in­fra­struc­ture – prin­ci­pally the North­ern In­ter­cep­tor and high­way im­prove­ments – were com­pleted. Con­struc­tion of stage one of Water­care’s North­ern In­ter­cep­tor pipe­line was ex­pected to start later this year.

The new pipe­line would re­di­rect waste­water flows from Massey, When­u­a­pai, Hob­sonville, Kumeu, Hua­pai and River­head to the Rosedale Waste­water Treat­ment Plant, in Al­bany.

HAMISH MCNI­COL/STUFF

Mayor Phil Goff says Coun­cil still needs bil­lions of dol­lars to cope with growth.

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