Space in­vaders: Where

John An­thony and Rob Stock search Auck­land for some sur­pris­ing build­ing plots.

Sunday News - - FRONT PAGE -

AUCK­LAND is fac­ing a land sup­ply short­age. Or is it?

Col­liers said this week Auck­land was at risk of fail­ing to meet tar­gets for house build­ing largely due to a land short­age – but a lot of land within the city lim­its is un­der­used by com­par­i­son to other ma­jor cities around the world.

Univer­sity of Auck­land ur­ban plan­ner Lee Beattie said un­der­utilised land would even­tu­ally give way to de­vel­op­ment.

‘‘It comes to a point that it be­comes worth so much that you can’t af­ford not to de­velop it,’’ Beattie said.

So where are these hid­den build­ing plots? Auck­lan­ders are spoilt for golf­ing choice with 39 cour­ses, 14 of which are Auck­land Coun­cil-owned. Fig­ures from 2012 show Auck­land had more golf cour­ses per capita than Mel­bourne, Syd­ney, Perth, Zurich, Mel­bourne and Van­cou­ver but only 4 per cent of Auck­land’s pop­u­la­tion are reg­is­tered golfers and be­tween 1998 and 2014 adult par­tic­i­pa­tion fell 8 per cent.. In his 2016 elec­tion cam­paign Auck­land Mayor Phil Goff was open about his de­sire to sell land oc­cu­pied by Auck­land golf cour­ses, point­ing to Re­muera Golf Course as a prime ex­am­ple of land that could be put to bet­ter use.

Just last month a 2.8 hectare block pre­vi­ously leased by Auck­land Coun­cil to Re­muera Golf Club was listed for sale by coun­cil-con­trolled or­gan­i­sa­tion Panuku to make way for up to 100 houses.

NZ Golf said it strongly ad­vo­cated for the re­ten­tion of as much of Auck­land’s golf­ing foot­print as pos­si­ble and it was lob­by­ing Auck­land Coun­cil to in­crease its in­vest­ment to get more golf fa­cil­i­ties de­vel­oped. Car deal­er­ships often clus­ter to­gether, but along a roughly 1.5 kilo­me­tre stretch of Great North Rd, just min­utes from trendy Karanga­hape and Pon­sonby roads, sit about a dozen car deal­er­ships. Pop­ping up around them are brand-new apart­ments, with $1 mil­lion price tags, sell­ing out be­fore the paint barely has time to dry. Col­liers spokesman Alan

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