Christchurch developer Philip Carter snaps up key city site

The former Pagoda Court building has changed hands and will be developed.
JOSEPH JOHNSON/FAIRFAX NZ

The former Pagoda Court building has changed hands and will be developed.

Property investor and developer Philip Carter has snapped up a key site in central Christchurch's new retail precinct.

The property is the corner piece of the damaged former Pagoda Court building at the corner of Colombo and Cashel streets, opposite Ballantynes.

It has sat vacant and boarded up since the earthquakes and was gutted earlier this year by its previous owner, a local family trust headed by Kenneth Yee.

Philip Carter outbid four other would-be buyers to snap up the key site.

Philip Carter outbid four other would-be buyers to snap up the key site.

The property sold for $3.6 million at auction this week after Carter outbid four other would-be buyers. 

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It includes the part of the building that housed the former Pagoda Court restaurant space on the upper floor, and the former pharmacy store space at street level.

Vacant stores facing Colombo St comprise the other 40 per cent of the building and are owned by a group of investors under another unit title.

John Greenwood, spokesman for those investors, said the sale was a good outcome for the site. They were looking forward to working with the Carter Group to either refurbish or rebuild, he said.

They had already had discussions with would-be tenants but no commitments yet, Greenwood said.

"We hope we'll be able to renovate it, but we are just waiting on the final engineering reports. We would like it to be an attractive building and it's a great central spot.

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"We are very happy to have a major developer coming in who understands what needs to be done."

The Carter Group did not reply to a request for comment on the purchase. The group owns multiple sites in central Christchurch.

The building is next to the new BNZ Centre which is already partly open, across the road from the new ANZ Centre, diagonally opposite the Carter Group's $140m development The Crossing.

Central City Business Association chairman Brendan Chase ​said that with big complexes in the retail precinct nearing completion, investors were now picking up the key smaller sites.

Chase said the Pagoda Court building had a key position in the precinct and described the sale as welcome news.

"It will be great to see the building brought back to life, however it's done. If that creates some more momentum it will be good for the retail precinct," he said.

 - Stuff

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