Big Auckland CBD site has hotel development potential

PRESS RELEASE: Bayleys

Hotel developers are being targeted in the sale of a substantial Auckland CBD corner site.

Located on the three titles at 13 and 15 Albert Street and 9 Wolfe St, the offering encompasses a total of 1228 sq m of land and is ripe for redevelopment, says Bayleys senior commercial agent Robert Platt and who is marketing the property with Bayleys’ director, hotel and tourism Nick Thompson.

Featured in Bayleys’ latest Total Property portfolio, it is for sale as one lot with vacant possession, closing at 4pm, August 25 unless sold sooner.

Platt says the current owners, who have owned the property for many years, are not developers and have never lodged redevelopment consents on the land.

“It’s an outstanding redevelopment opportunity occupying a profile corner position with three street frontages and located on one of Auckland CBD’s main arterial roads, Albert Street. It would be a superb location for a hotel development but the design and type of development undertaken will be for the new land owners to decide.

“It’s flexible City Centre zoning under the new Unitary Plan allows for a high density mix of commercial and residential uses with a ratio of 13 sq m of building per one sq m of land allowed.”

Platt says the site is close to Queen Street, the waterfront, the Britomart transport hub and the Commercial Bay office and retail complex currently under construction. Surrounding buildings feature high and medium rise office towers including the prominent ANZ office building, a number of residential apartments occupying both converted buildings and new built developments and also the Stanford Plaza and Quay West Hotels.

The largest of the three titles is 9 Wolfe St which encompasses 759 sq m of land. The run down five-level ex-Challenge House is located on this corner site which also has frontage onto Federal Street. The lower three floors of this building were leased to Wilsons Carparking until recently but the whole building is now vacant.

This site adjoins 15 Albert St which has 269 sq m of land on the corner with Wolfe St and has two smaller buildings of 440m² and 610m² respectively. The 13 Albert St title is the smallest with 200 sq m of land. This has a 960sq m six-level character style commercial building with a Heritage B designation.

Platt says the offering presents a number of development options. The existing building at 13 Albert St could be integrated into an overall development of the entire site.

Alternatively, the character buildings at 13-15 Albert Street buildings could be refurbished and restored and the unused developable gross floor area (GFA) transferred to 9 Wolfe Street, which would allow a taller building to be constructed on that title.

“The restored buildings at 13-15 Albert Street could be integrated with the newly developed Wolfe St site and used as ancillary hotel or retail areas. Or they could be on-sold at a later date either refurbished or in their current raw state.”

Thompson says there continues to be strong interest in CBD hotel sites given the current shortage of hotel beds and a projected increase in future demand which will result from the new Sky City convention centre and major events such as Apec and the defence of the America’s Cup.

He was recently involved in the sale on behalf of Manson TCLM of a nearby1100sq m site in Wyndham St which has been bought by Australia-based Pro-Invest Group for the development of a 37-level tower for two InterContinental hotels – a Holiday Inn and wellness lifestyle hotel, Even.

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