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The week in real estate development - 23 June 2021


A weekly update of the biggest real estate development news from New Zealand and around the globe.

New Zealand real estate development news

  • Chris Farhi Vlog: The latest vlog checked out real estate action along Hobson Street in central Auckland. Topics included the latest announcements about the Downtown Carpark, refurbishment of the Chorus House lobby, progress on the NZ International Convention Centre, and the scaffolding wrap being opened on the Auckland City Mission's Homeground development.
  • Government announces criteria for housing development funding: The Government has announced that $1B of funding will be dedicated to housing developments that are already planned but need extra funding to proceed. The funding will be available through the Infrastructure Acceleration Fund. Invitations for expressions of interest will be sent to iwi, councils, and developers from 30 June 2021.
  • Hellmann to invest in Auckland Airport development: Hellmann is planning to invest €28M in a warehouse lease and development project dedicated to Techtronic Industries. The warehouse will consist of 16,000 sqm warehouse space and 3,200 sqm canopy space. It will allow for storage for 29,000 pallets.
  • State houses to be repurposed: 2,500 state houses in Auckland’s Tāmaki area will be relocated and refurbished to make room for 10,500 new builds over the next 20 years. If relocation is not possible, the house will be deconstructed and materials will be reused in the community.
  • Funding secured for new Porirua Adventure Park and Gondola: Select Contracts NZ has secured anchor investment partners to re-launch the Porirua Adventure Park project. The Adventure Park and Gondola will include a top station restaurant, a 1.4km zipline and walking trails. The Gondola will be 290m high. Select Contracts NZ are in the process of securing the remainder of funding for the project.
  • Terra Civil announce plans for The Grand Hotel: Terra Civil are planning to restore the 115-year-old The Grand Hotel by keeping the ground floor retail spaces and building luxury apartments above. Terra Civil will now focus on determining what aspects of the building are essential to its character.
  • University of Otago Council planning new building in Christchurch: The University of Otago Council has announced plans to develop a six-level building in Christchurch. The $178M building will include four floors of labs, an outpatient clinic research facility, a centre for postgraduate Nursing students, an imaging suite and space for the departments of psychological medicine, pathology, and biomedical science. Completion is expected in 2025.
  • $90M precinct development planned for Christchurch: Peebles Group, Mike Greer Homes and Blackcomb Property Group are planning a $90M precinct for the former convention centre site in Christchurch. The precinct will include townhouses, a hotel and office buildings across 7,000 sqm of land. The site has been subject to various failed development attempts in recent years.
  • Contamination at new Dunedin Hospital site: The former Cadbury Factory site in Dunedin contains contaminated soil impacting the development of the new $1.47B Dunedin Hospital. Development planners are deciding whether to remove the contaminated soil or leave it untreated under the existing concrete slab. The demolition of the Cadbury Factory is nearing completion. 

Global real estate development news

  • Eco World International lodges plans for apartment tower: Eco World International has lodged plans to develop a 16-storey apartment building in Sydney. The $56M development will comprise 124 dwellings including apartments, townhouses, and duplexes, 107 carparks, a gym, and shared workspaces. The development will replace existing mid-rise buildings.
  • NSW government announces Powerhouse Museum transformation: The NSW government has announced $500M of funding for the transformation of the Powerhouse Museum in Sydney. The redevelopment of the museum will centre the museum as a cultural precinct including a larger exhibition space and a new entrance that connects to adjacent precincts. The heritage aspects of the building will be preserved during the transformation.
  • Macquarie opens new data centre: Macquarie has opened a new high-security data centre in Canberra. The 5 bunker data centre is designed to support Australia’s national cybersecurity, data sovereignty and digital skills development. The development was a part of Macquarie’s $200M investment into Canberra and Sydney data centre campuses.
  • Liberty Trust building hotel conversion: Savara Hospitality is converting the historic Liberty Trust Building in Roanoke, USA into a boutique hotel. The hotel will comprise 54 rooms, dining and social areas and meeting rooms. The building was originally built in 1910 as a bank headquarters. The new hotel will open at the end of 2021.
  • Amazon announces capital funding for affordable homes: Amazon has announced a $75M capital fund for developers to develop 800 affordable homes in Nashville, USA. The capital fund is part of Amazon's $2B housing equity fund to develop 20,000 affordable homes.
  • Dalhousie University event centre approved: Dalhousie University in Canada has approved an event arena and community centre for their campus, after a decade without one on campus. The centre will comprise an NHL-sized ice sheet, a physiotherapy clinic and event spaces. Completion is expected in 2023.
  • Raffle Hotels and Resorts to operate hotel in the former Old War Office in London: Singapore hotel brand Raffles Hotels and Resorts has announced they will be operating a hotel called The Owo in the former Old War Office building in London. The 70,606 sqm hotel will comprise 125 rooms, 9 restaurants and bars, and a spa. The hotel is expected to open in 2022 once revocations are completed.
  • Peterborough university research centre gains approval: Peterborough City Council has approved the plans for a three-storey research centre for the new ARU Peterborough university manufacturing and materials research department. The £16.7M development will include 3,300 sqm of research space and 380 carparks. The new ARU Peterborough university is expected to open in 2022 with over 2,000 students. The research centre is expected to be completed in 2023.
  • Bro Ddyfi Community hospital redevelopment: The Bro Ddyfi Community Hospital in Wales has gained £15M from the Welsh government for redevelopment plans. The redevelopment will integrate health care and wellbeing services. The redevelopment is expected to take 18 months and open in 2023.
  • Hong Kong historic post office headquarters to be demolished: Developers are lodging plans to demolish the historic post office headquarters in Hong Kong to make way for a commercial waterfront development. Architects opposing these plans have lodged proposals to conserve the iconic building. The site is valued between HK$40B and HK$60B.
  • Alibaba Cloud announces Philippines data centre: Alibaba Cloud has announced plans to open a data centre in the Philippines. The development is part of a US$1B expansion plan across Southeast Asia. The new data centre will increase Alibaba’s data centre count to 76.

Contact property consultant Chris Farhi at Colliers Strategic Advisory to request an email notification for this weekly update.

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Renee Lintott

Strategic Analyst


Renee was the recipient of the Blair Hargrave/Colliers  Scholarship in 2019 before joining the  Strategic Advisory team as an analyst in the same year. Renee worked part time in the team for 2 years whilst completing  her tertiary qualifications and joined full time in mid 2021. 

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