Property editor of the NZ Herald

Chancery $3m leaky payout fuelling repairs

Maintenance and facelift for leaky Chancery under way after win from mediated talks.

Wrapping is enabling repairs to the Chancery complex to continue through winter. Photo / Sarah Ivey
Wrapping is enabling repairs to the Chancery complex to continue through winter. Photo / Sarah Ivey

The owners of properties in Auckland's leaky Chancery shopping complex have won $3.4 million for repairs, now about halfway through.

Tony Allsop, of property managers and consultants Colliers International, said the money was paid last year after mediation, enabling one of the inner-city's largest building repairs and upgrades to start.

No exact finish date has been set.

"The $3.4 million is the result of mediation with [builders] Multiplex and many others and that was paid last year," he said.

A $2.8 million contract was signed with head contractor Arrow International leaving $600,000 over from the settlement, he said.

"We deliberately left quite a contingency sum to work out what happens when we are quite a way into the contract. It's nowhere near the level of work we originally thought would be required."

Chancery has many different owners because the office and retail properties at the upmarket award-winning precinct are strata-titled.

The block opposite Freyberg Place at the foot of the Metropolis Residences apartment block opened in 2000 but suffered weathertightness issues for many years.

Allsop said that as well as leak repairs, Chancery was getting a major facelift and a new colour scheme by architects Ignite which would give each building a distinctive look. Changes were also being made to the courtyard at the centre of the complex and a new retail strategy would be discussed.

Graeme Birkhead, Arrow's northern director, said much of the work would be finished around the end of this year.

Work could continue in winter because so much of the site had been protected by shrink wrap, he said, although the the job remained extremely challenging.

"Logistically, it's pretty demanding. It's a pretty complicated shape," Birkhead said of the building layout.

"But the shrink wrap allows us to work right through the winter ... and also, where we have walls removed, it's not leaking into the buildings."

A number of businesses have left Chancery including Barfoot & Thompson's head office, now in the former Auckland Club space on Shortland St, and upmarket menswear store Working Style, now in the General Building on Shortland St. Lawyers ChanceryGreen moved temporarily.

"As you may have heard, the Chancery complex is leaking and rectification works have started. These works are too disruptive to our practice, so we are on the move. ChanceryGreen will be in virtual office mode until further notice," the lawyers told their clients.

Allsop said Barfoot's commercial division had stayed at Chancery. Negotiations were under way to lease the space Barfoot had left.

- NZ Herald

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