Part of George Lowe place that has been granted Special Housing Area status. It is understood that the applicants do not yet own all the properties that would need demolishing to build the proposed apartment block.
The final tranche of Special Housing Areas was jointly announced by the Minister for Building and Housing, Dr Nick Smith and Mayor Len Brown on April 7.
As expected, the only new Special Housing Area on the Coast was the one in George Lowe Place, Orewa, adjacent to New World (HM March 2).
A development including more than 120 apartments has been proposed on this site (encompassing 6–8 and 7–9 George Lowe Place, through to 6–8 Hillary Square) by Clifford and Carol Smith. It may link up with a public walkway.
Currently there is a range of light industrial and retail businesses operating there.
As the site has been granted Special Housing Area status, development can be fast tracked with minimal consultation and appeal rights for the community. Special Housing Areas must also contain a component of affordable housing.
Discussions with Council staff, prior to the lodging of a resource consent application for the residential development, have taken place but no application has yet been lodged.
The suggestion that the area from George Lowe Place to Hillary Square was ripe for development was made in the Orewa Centre Plan commissioned from planner Jason Evans by the Hibiscus & Bays Local Board last year and approved last December.
This part of the town centre has a height limit of 16.5m, or effectively five storeys, under the proposed Unitary Plan.