The first house is rising at Todd Property's new Long Bay residential estate on the northern outskirts of Auckland.
This is the biggest new residential development in New Zealand, a 160ha estate where more than 2000 places will be built for about 5000 people.
A Todd spokesman said G.J. Gardner was building in Ara Place, the show home street.
G.J. Gardner is the country's largest group house builder, its franchises put up more than 500 places annually.
"The first residents should be moving into their homes in time for Christmas," the spokesman said.
"Houses and land packages in the same street have gone for $1.25 million and we expect demand above that," he said.
The 285sq m four-bedroom house with a study is being built on a 530sq m site. The first four stages of sections at Long Bay have sold out, the spokesman said.
About 235 houses and townhouses can be developed on those four stages.
"We will soon release three more stages in the $500,000 to $600,000 range," the spokesman said.