Urban development

Delivering urban development is key to addressing challenges around housing and infrastructure and providing better environments for New Zealanders to live and work in.

Our team of specialists helps private developers, local authorities and social housing providers to deliver some of New Zealand’s largest urban renewal projects that are making a positive difference to communities.

Our strength is our ability to create a cohesive strategy that covers all of the aspects involved in urban development projects, including strategic, planning, property, local government, public works, construction, commercial, funding and financing advice (including PPPs).

Our team is experienced at delivering urban development projects no matter the process. This includes navigating the complex matrix of laws that apply to such large developments and working closely with other stakeholders and partners (including iwi, local communities, central and local governments). We have experience in housing, transport, water, retirement and public realm projects.

We regularly advocate before councils and courts to achieve the planning provisions or consents to allow these developments to proceed.

We have been heavily involved in recent legal developments designed to deliver projects in a more streamlined manner, including advising on projects under the Urban Development Act 2020 and the COVID-19 Recovery (Fast-track Consenting) Act 2020, and are now advising clients on the new Fast-track Approvals Bill.

Work Highlights

Large-scale housing developments

We advise a number of housing developers, including being lead adviser to Fletcher Residential on its large-scale developments. Our work for Fletcher Residential has included the redevelopment of the Three Kings quarry, the redevelopment of Waiata Shores (previously the Manukau golf course) and other large urban developments at Whenuapai, Hobsonville Point, Kowhai Ridge - Massey, Karaka and Flat Bush.

Social and community housing

In many recent engagements, we have advised on the delivery of large-scale social housing solutions for clients including community housing providers (CHPs), local authorities and Iwi. Our work has included tax and corporate structuring (including charitable group structures), financing, asset transfers and ongoing management and support.

Private plan changes

We are acting on several large plan changes throughout Auckland that will allow for the establishment of communities ranging in size from 700 to 4,000 plus houses. These applications have involved land in Warkworth in the North, Drury to the South, and Beachlands and the Formosa Golf Club land to the East.

The Auckland downtown projects

We acted for Auckland Council and Auckland Transport on the downtown projects which included new and strengthened seawalls, a relocated Ferry Terminal, road stopping, new downtown public spaces and new linear urban spaces (including bus lanes, cycleways and pedestrian walkways). This project is the final link between Britomart / Commercial Bay and the waterfront.

IFF programme

We are lead adviser to the Crown on the Infrastructure Funding & Financing (IFF) programme, including advising on the design and implementation of the programme and enabling legislation, and on the IFF funding and financing for key urban development projects including the Western Bay of Plenty Transport System Plan and Wellington City’s new Sludge Minimisation Facility at Moa Point.

Auckland infrastructure projects

We are advising on infrastructure projects that will be transformational for Auckland’s urban development, including the Eastern Busway and the replacement of the Huia Water Treatment Plant.

Fast track consenting

We have expertise in consenting housing and mixed-use developments under the COVID-19 Recovery (Fast-track Consenting) Act 2020, and now are advising clients on the new Fast-track Approvals Bill

Auckland regeneration projects

Our work has included:

  • Tāmaki regeneration. We advised on the regeneration of a large suburban area in east Auckland – an urban renewal project involving 800 hectares, converting 2,500 social houses into 7,500 houses.
  • America’s Cup / AC36. We advised on consenting the infrastructure for the 36th America’s Cup. This project is a further step in the urban transformation of the northern part of Wynyard Point.
  • Britomart. This was a pivotal project transforming the Auckland CBD close to the waterfront. At the time it was an innovative approach to urban transformation and has led the way for many projects across New Zealand.
  • Wynyard Quarter. One of the largest urban redevelopment and regeneration projects successfully undertaken in New Zealand, it has led to a vibrant community at the heart of Auckland.

Parliamentary Precinct

We are acting for the Crown to facilitate a redevelopment of the Parliamentary Precinct to enable its use in a fit for purpose way into the future.

Wellington development projects

We are acting for developers on significant projects within Wellington City and the region, delivering high quality residential and commercial developments.

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