May 04, 2014
Ngati Whatua land leased for retirees homes
Ngati Whatua o Orakei has leased a controversial block of land overlooking Devonport to retirement home operator, Ryman Healthcare for 150 years.
The 4.2 hectare Wakakura block, which used to contain navy housing, was bought as part of the hapu’s historic treaty settlement.
It has been the subject of protests from some community advocates who were concerned about how they would be developed.
Rob Hutchinson, the chief executive of Ngati Whatua’s commercial arm Whai Rawa, says the high value of the land meant it was uneconomic to build affordable housing.
High density housing was also ruled out because of restricted access and Lake Road traffic problems.
He says that made a retirement village the preferred and most viable option for the site.
Ngati Whatua Orakei Trust deputy chair Ngarimu Blair says the long term lease means the hapu remains the kaitiaki of the land at Wakakura and will always have mana there.
He says the trust has a responsibility to create inter-generational wealth for its people.
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