30 November, 2012
First CBD commercial land purchases welcomed
Canterbury Earthquake Recovery Minister Gerry Brownlee says the first commercial property purchases for Christchurch’s CBD Blueprint Plan represent an important milestone in the city’s recovery.
“I’m pleased with progress made by the Christchurch Central Development Unit (CCDU) in negotiating with landowners to create a willing-buyer willing-seller scenario,” Mr Brownlee says.
“To date the Crown has purchased three properties that will form part of anchor projects outlined in the Blueprint in the Christchurch Central Recovery Plan.”
The three properties are the Craigs House and Lucks Building sites, which will form part of the new Convention Centre Precinct, and the Poplars Apartments site, which will be part of the new East Frame.
Purchase prices will be publicly available when final settlement of the transactions has been completed.
Mr Brownlee says the Crown has agreement in principle with the owners of another 15 properties, and is at an advanced stage of negotiation on a further 50.
“Negotiations are underway on 116 properties in total, which shows CCDU is making real progress towards achieving the vision laid out in the Blueprint Plan – a plan the public have very positively embraced.
“CCDU is finding property owners are keen to engage in negotiations with the Crown, and to conclude these negotiations in a timely way so they can move on and perhaps invest elsewhere in the city.”
The Crown intends to acquire 761 designated properties in the CBD, with the first negotiations being carried out according to the priority of the anchor projects.
Once agreement is reached between the Crown and property owners, sale and purchase agreements are prepared, signed by the vendor and in turn the Minister’s delegate, before settlement occurs within a mutually agreeable time frame.
If agreement cannot be reached, the Crown will need to consider moving to the process of compulsory acquisition.
Notices of Intention to take land by compulsory acquisition have so far been sent to 45 property owners in priority anchor project areas, but these notices do not prevent negotiations continuing or indicate anything about the nature of ongoing negotiations.
More information on the CBD Blueprint and the property acquisition process can be found at www.ccdu.govt.nz.