$500m revamp for Shelly Bay, Wellington

An artist's impression of a proposed redevelopment of Wellington's Shelly Bay. It would include more than 350 homes, a ...
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An artist's impression of a proposed redevelopment of Wellington's Shelly Bay. It would include more than 350 homes, a boutique hotel, a brewery, a rest home and a ferry service.

The future shape of Wellington's Shelly Bay revamp is becoming clearer, with new plans hinting at more than 350 homes, a boutique hotel, a brewery, a rest home and a ferry service.

But Wellingtonians, who own a large chunk of Shelly Bay, will not get a say on whether resource consent for the $500 million development on the Miramar Peninsula site should get the final tick.

The non-notified resource consent is currently was working its way through Wellington City Council processes and only council staff - not even elected councillors - will decide whether it gets the green light.

The plan is for 280 apartments, 58 townhouses and 14 standalone houses.
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The plan is for 280 apartments, 58 townhouses and 14 standalone houses.

According to the consent application there will be a 140-resident rest home, a boutique hotel with 50-odd rooms, 280 apartments, 58 townhouses and 14 standalone houses at Shelly Bay.

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A ferry linking the site to the city is also mooted but not elaborated on in the documents as it fell outside the scope of the consent application.

The development would be a joint venture between the Port Nicholson Block Development Trust and The Wellington Company.
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The development would be a joint venture between the Port Nicholson Block Development Trust and The Wellington Company.

There was also potential for a community centre, micro-brewery, restaurant, cafe, artist's studio and shop, a gym, childcare and a medical centre.

The application was submitted to the city council in September by The Wellington Company

Director Ian Cassels said work on Shelly Bay was long overdue.

People "should be jumping from the rooftops" and applauding the fact something looked set to be built there, he said.

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The project would cost about $500m, and despite rumours to the contrary was not being funded by Chinese money.

The project also involved the Port Nicholson Block Settlement Trust, but the exact nature of that relationship was yet to be finalised, Cassels said.

The consent application was filed under the Housing Accords Special Housing Areas Act, which was set up in 2013 to fast-track urgent housing projects and create affordable housing.

That process cuts down on the amount of Government red tape standing in developers' way, but it also cuts the public out of the decision-making process.

Wellington city councillor Andy Foster said he believed most people would support the Shelly Bay plans but they should have been given a say on whether it gets resource consent.

But they could eventually get a voice, given the council owned between one-third and half of the land the development was on, Foster said.

In the application, The Wellington Company argues the only immediate neighbour, the New Zealand Defence Force , should not be notified about the consent as it "should not be considered as affected".

Cassels said there were no concerns that the public were not being notified as there were "no real immediate neighbours".

Victoria University senior law lecturer Dean Knight, who specialises in local government issues, said it was "very unusual" for a matter to be non-notified and declined.

This was because non-notified consents usually passed the necessary thresholds, so those making the decision were more likely to prescribe conditions on a development rather than halt them.

 - Stuff

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