The Government has today signed an agreement with an iwi and a construction company to build a 100-home development with an average price of $573,000 in New North Road, Mt Albert.

The deal, on land that had belong to the New Zealand Transport Agency for the Waterview project involves the Marutuahu iwi, which is part of the Tamaki Collective, and Ockham Residential Ltd.

Building and Housing Minister Nick Smith said the Special Housing Area status granted earlier this year enabled 100 homes on the site, rather than 24 under the old planning rules.

"The key to more affordable housing close to Auckland city is greater density and smart design."

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Building and Housing Minister Nick Smith with some of the Crown's surplus land. Photo/ Nick Reed
Building and Housing Minister Nick Smith with some of the Crown's surplus land. Photo/ Nick Reed
FOCUS ON APARTMENTS

Ockham had proven experience in developing innovative, high-quality and affordable housing with a focus on three and four level character apartments, he said.

Marutūāhu Rōpū was an important partner and through the Tāmaki Collective helped achieve the successful housing development at Waimahia at Weymouth.

Smith said it was the first development under the Housing Protocol between the Crown and Tāmaki Collective.

The protocol was negotiated after the Collective asserted the right of first refusal on Crown land after the Government announcement in the 2015 budget to use surplus land in Auckland for joint ventures.

Smith said it was anticipated that construction would being in July 2017 with the first dwellings to be completed by May 2018 and the rest in 2018 and 2019.

"This development is part of the Crown Land Housing Programme, where the Government is using its ownership to help facilitate an increase in the supply and affordability of housing.

DEFERRED SETTLEMENT

"The Government receives deferred settlement for the land but places requirements on development to occur at pace and for the homes to be constructed at the more affordable end of the housing market."

Smith also said earthworks were beginning today on the Moire Rd site in Massey East for a 196-home project, of which 30 per cent would be social housing.

Community housing providers (CHPs) would have the first option to buy those houses and if not taken up, they would be available to first home buyers.

The Government would be offering financial support to the CHPs to buy the homes and income related rent subsidies.

Sensitive to criticism that the Government is not doing enough to increase the supply of housing in Auckland, said it was resolving Auckland's housing challenges "step by step, development by development."

MULTIPLE REFORMS

"We have multiple reforms under way with Special Housing Areas, the new Unitary Plan, the National Policy Statement on Urban Development, the Resource Management Amendment Bill, KiwiSaver HomeStart and the Housing Infrastructure Fund, as well as this Crown Land Housing Programme."

Proof that those reforms were working in Auckland was the doubling in residential building activity during the past three years to an all-time high of more than $7 billion per year.

"This latest housing development in Mt Albert, alongside others in Auckland at Hobsonville, Weymouth, Tamaki, Northcote, McLellan and Moire Road, has the Government directly involved in building more homes than at any other time in Auckland's history."

He would be announcing more developments before the end of the year.