Cranes signs of rapid revamp of central Hamilton

AARON LEAMAN
Last updated 05:00 19/09/2012
TAKING SHAPE: Excavation work at the site of the Citygate building on the corner of Anglesea and Ward streets is almost complete, with the building due to be finished in the middle of  next year.
PETER DRURY

TAKING SHAPE: Excavation work at the site of the Citygate building on the corner of Anglesea and Ward streets is almost complete, with the building due to be finished in the middle of next year.

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Two large cranes on Hamilton's inner-city skyline point to a flurry of development taking place in the city's heart.

Recent weeks of squally, wet weather haven't slowed progress on the McConnell Property's Citygate building, and other key city building sites also remain on schedule.

A towering Hawkins Construction crane at the Citygate's site on the corner of Anglesea and Ward streets is one visible sign of activity happening on site.

McConnell Property senior development manager Aidan Donnelly said Hawkins had almost completed site excavations and passers-by could expect to see the Citygate building "come out of the ground" over the coming few months.

The five-storey building will feature 5300 square metres of office and retail space with PwC confirmed as the anchor tenant.

And despite recent wet weather, Mr Donnelly said the building was on target to be finished by the middle of next year.

"The thing about the Citygate site is it's largely sandy, silty soils so it's been really good in terms of being able to manage rainwater.

"The crane is up and I suppose an interesting side to that is if you look at the skyline on the CBD there are two cranes; our crane and the Kiwi Income's crane on Centre Place. Someone was telling me from memory it's been about 10 years since there were two cranes on the CBD skyline."

Kiwi Income Property Trust are completing a $40 million redevelopment of Centre Place.

Once complete, a covered link across Ward St West will bring together under a single roof the original Centre Place and the mall formerly known as Downtown.

Mr Donnelly said Citygate would have about 740 sqm of open plaza fronting Anglesea St which will be passed over to Hamilton City Council as a public open space.

"What that will do is create the link from the Wintec campus into the CBD so the plaza area will be a nice addition to the CBD open space network."

Meanwhile, work on the Project Grantham riverside complex is also progressing, with work on the building's foundations under way. Foster Construction are the main contractors.

Project Grantham director Lyall Green said the building, which features four storeys and two basement levels, was due to be finished by the end of 2013.

The 9000 sqm riverside development also includes a restaurant and boutique retail space. It is one of several projects helping to turn the city toward the river.

Earlier this year, McConnell Property revealed plans for the Victoria on the River site.

Meanwhile, SkyCity general manager Arthur Pitcher said the company was hoping to finalise plans for a luxury $35m hotel above its Hamilton property by the end of the year.

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- Waikato Times

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