Hamilton City Council voted unanimously for Jebson Place in Hamilton East to be the city's first Special Housing Area under new rules approved in August. The council's recommendation made on Wednesday now goes to the Minster for approval - when a new Government is installed. The Jebson Place site skipped to the council's final stage for SHA status as city council had already given consent 71 residential dwellings to be built. Under SHA rules it can increase to 80 dwellings. Housing New Zealand had already been granted resource consents by Hamilton city council in March 2017, but a special housing area designation would allow the development to move faster. It would also allow for high density within the site and a further nine units to be added
"Did anyone say that they did not want this to happen?"The site is located in Hamilton East bounded by Dey Street to the east and Old Farm Road to the west. It was developed in the early 1960s by the New Zealand government for social housing and contained a mix of one and two storey duplex apartments. It has been progressively vacated since March 2012 and is now vacant. The site has partnership land owners in Waikato-Tainui and Housing New Zealand who are looking to provide a level of affordable housing as quickly as possible. It is the objectives of the site to provide 10 to 20 per cent of affordable housing under the Waikato-Tainui first-time buyer scheme for their part of the site. The Dey Street side of the site will have 30 Housing New Zealand social housing units. The development will contain a mix of housing types with detached housing and a row of apartments and terraced dwellings. The majority of the buildings will be single stories. The only concern came from Councillor Garry Mallett who asked why public feedback was not considered necessary for this site in particular. "Did anyone say that they did not want this to happen?" Cr Mallett said. City planner Luke O'Dwyer, who prepared a report on Jebson Place, said that public feed back was not necessary as 71 dwellings were already consented. "From my opinion the additional nine dwellings is not significant and the design is very similar to what was approved already," Mr O'Dwyer said. Councillor Paula Southgate was in total support for the area and said the planned shared green space as an exciting feature. "I do like that there will be green space because what was there before was awful," Cr Southgate said. "It does give a new way of living in a community and I think we should be doing this." "This is exactly the sort of mixed model with good sense of diversity and good sense of urban design that we would hope the SHA would support." The council voted 10-0 in favour with councillors Angela O'Leary and Rob Pascoe absent.