'House of Horrors' closer to becoming park
Wainoni's ''House of Horrors'' site is a step closer to being turned into a public reserve.
The Burwood-Pegasus Community Board has voted unanimously to recommend the council buy the cross-leased section on the corner of Wainoni Rd and Hampshire St where two woman were killed and buried under the floorboards of a semi-detached flat.
The bodies of Rebecca Somerville and missing neighbour Tisha Lowry were found in September 2009.
Jason Somerville is serving a 23-year non-parole sentence for the murders, which were about a year apart.
The building was destroyed after a series of arsons.
Board deputy chairman Tim Baker said ''a bit of green space'' was the best option for the site.
While there had not been formal community consultation, there appeared to be support for the the public park idea.
''Otherwise there would be two mortgagee sales going on, and no-one would buy it,'' he said.
The board's decision was made in a public-excluded session on Monday.
Finance company Liberty Financial, which requisitioned Somerville's unit, and Jason Drain, who owned the flat next door, had signed the council's offer and sent it back.
Baker said the price could not be disclosed.
The Press understands the council offer was about $50,000 for each cross-leased section.
City councillors will vote on whether to proceed with the purchase on October 11.
Mayor Bob Parker said earlier that he supported the purchase going ahead ''for the community to move on''.
An offer was due to go before the community board for consideration in 2010 but it fell through after the September 4 earthquake.
- © Fairfax NZ News
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