Weekend Herald

IT’S ELECTRIFYI­NG

The Electric is a new developmen­t in Kingsland with 33 apartments now for sale starting from $695,000 to more than $2.75 million, writes ROBYN WELSH

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The Electric,

445 New North Road

1-3 1-2+ 1-2

Inner city Kingsland is about to ramp up its electrific­ation. Just along from its train station, The Electric apartment developmen­t is about to become the brightest star on its New North Road ridgeline.

Above ground floor retail/ commercial, its 33 apartments, now for sale, will throw new light and contempora­ry style across one of Auckland’s oldest suburbs. “The drive behind the name The Electric is the buzz and energy of Kingsland - a neighbourh­ood with a progressiv­e mindset, distinct atmosphere and electric culture,” Juliet Lichtenste­in says, Collier’s Residentia­l Project Sales Manager.

In 2016 lead architect Simon Woodall of Chow: Hill got talking to the developers, the Cassidy family, whose connection­s to Kingsland date back to the 1980s.

With all eyes on this underused property, Woodall took time out from a family trip to Sydney that year to check out Sydney’s brightest new apartment developmen­ts.

What he saw resonated with the Auckland Council’s design guidelines for contempora­ry developmen­ts — to preserve streetscap­e character and respect, rather than replicate, architectu­ral history.

“That’s what we have achieved,” Woodall says.

“We studied the balance of the subdivisio­n patterns up and down the road, the way the shops were broken up and the historical elements. There was depth to our thinking here around its modular form and we were mindful of how the facade steps in and out, without eroding that street wall.

“We wanted to produce a piece of design that simultaneo­usly felt at home in Kingsland and yet stood out in the middle of a constantly evolving, energetic neighbourh­ood.”

The result is a boutique apartment building with climbing greenery, a multi-level glazed facade and a social connection to its green views.

There are 2.5m deep, semienclos­ed balconies/sunrooms, with glass sliding doors and bifold aluminium timber-look shutters for lifestyle flexibilit­y.

North-facing views sweep across to the Great North Road ridge; to the west, The Electric steps down one storey with views from expansive decks towards the Waitakere Ranges.

Close to home, there is a contemplat­ive, Japanesein­spired, semi-enclosed courtyard garden and water feature to look down on.

The contempora­ry, L-shaped form of The Electric on its

1700sqm site is a far cry from the existing low-slung

1960s/70s commercial buildings, set back with car parking in front.

It epitomises the lifestyle and design difference­s, and what Woodall calls this new “active facade”, that better connects residents to this new community vibe.

Chow: Hill's design team included architect Katie Dickens and interior designer Amy Land who is behind the “Element” and “Mineral” interiors palettes.

The choices are an edgy or more conservati­ve vibe to kitchens and bathrooms, Woodall says.

“It’s about keeping the living areas neutral - some of the apartments have bagged brick walls for texture - and letting those other areas pop.

The Electric is a real standout for this neighbourh­ood and we’re really proud of that.” Sale: 33 apartments from $695,000 to over $2.75 million. Penthouse POA.

Contact: Sherryl Todd, Colliers,

021 222 6308; Ainsley Lewis,

021 122 8585. Register at theelectri­c.co.nz to view the display unit at 445 New North Road, Kingsland

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