Classic Group helps first-home buyers
A collaboration between Classic Group and the Western Bay of Plenty District Council is aiming to help make the dream of owning a home a reality for 25 lucky first-home buyers.
The new Kaimai Terraces development will sit within Ōmokoroa's Kaimai View subdivision and expressions of interest can be registered now.
Classic Builders Bay of Plenty regional manager Nathan Watkins said some of the house and land packages will be priced below $700,000 and will include a mix of two and three-bedroom terraced two-storey homes. Building is expected to start in May.
Watkins said he anticipated demand will be extremely strong.
"At Classic Builders, we have a simple mission to create more homes for more Kiwis. We understand that getting into your first home is hard mahi and we are pleased to be doing our bit to help 25 new homeowners onto the property ladder.
"A lot of thought has gone into making the Kaimai Views subdivision accessible to first-home buyers. Those purchasing the Kaimai Terrace packages will also be able to utilise Kiwisaver."
Classic Builders house and land manager Sarah Davidson said the terraced housing product was something a bit new for Tauranga and particularly for the Western Bay.
"It's allowing us to work slightly differently, especially as regards creating a community hub around a green space.
"The opportunity we are creating here for first-home buyers is fantastic, in a market in which they are almost locked out. It would be awesome to get lots of young families in there."
Kaimai Terraces is stage six of the Kaimai View subdivision's nine stages. The complete subdivision includes 263 lots.
The Kaimai Terrace development will be managed under a body corporate.
"The benefit is that buyers' investment will be protected, with the body corporate managing everything in the development that is public-facing, keeping it at a high standard," Davidson said.
"This will include public landscaping, house washing, roadways, and maintenance of the homes' exteriors. The body corporate annual levy, which will be kept to a minimum, will also cover house insurance."
Western Bay of Plenty district mayor Garry Webber praised the initiative.
"It is a joint venture that just keeps on giving and is a model that central government is acutely aware of due to its success."
Plans progressing for new development on carpark site
The owners of 35 Hamilton St have confirmed "pleasing progress" in the planned redevelopment of the former Harington St Transport Hub site into a mixed-use carpark and commercial building.
Waibop (Hamilton) Limited, an arm of construction company Watts & Hughes, purchased the site from Tauranga City Council in early-2021 after the carpark project was abandoned due to the discovery of seismic strength deficiencies in the building design.
Development manager Laurie Flynn said the cost of remedying those deficiencies within the existing carpark design was "prohibitive".
"But Waibop's engineering expertise and willingness to develop new structural plans and go through the complex consenting process required to potentially add seven floors to the original structure has transformed the economic viability of construction on the site."
Watts and Hughes has now re-established activities on the site and initial work is focused on "deconstruction" (remediation) of the existing structure.
"Structural plans for the revised building concept have been completed, peer-reviewed and are now going through the building consent process.
"We are hopeful that the consenting phase of the project will be completed in the relatively near future, so that we can get on with the job of building what will be a substantial asset for Tauranga's central business district."
Plans for the building will retain a minimum of 200 public carparking spaces in the city centre, with further spaces available for tenants.
Flynn said Waibop is excited about the prospect of exploring development options for the site, in addition to the committed carparking building.
"We expect the enlarged structure will generate significant commercial opportunities and as we carry-out due diligence on those options, we are readying the site in preparation for the works commencing."
Blue Duck Rare Vodka wins gold
New Zealand's Blue Duck Rare Vodka has landed a prestigious Gold award in the vodka category at International Spirits Challenge 2022.
The International Spirits Challenge is one of the world's most prestigious spirits competitions, promoting outstanding quality spirits from across the globe.
The expert judges were impressed in a rigorous blind tasting process, leading to Blue Duck Rare Vodka winning the distinguished accolade.
It is the first time a New Zealand vodka has received this recognition since 42 Below in 2008.
Blue Duck Rare Vodka is committed to sustainable practices and also donates a portion of the proceeds to support the conservation of the whio (blue duck) and its habitat.
Blue Duck Rare Vodka is handcrafted and distilled in small batches at the distillery in Tauranga, Bay of Plenty.
Co-owner Irmengard Deinlein said the business was "delighted" to win Gold at the International Spirits Challenge for its vodka.
"Recognition of the time, dedication, and artistry required to produce a world-class spirit means so much coming from the most highly regarded global spirit competition.
"It's wonderful to see Blue Duck take flight on an international stage. Blue Duck Rare Vodka depends on the purity of the water we use for its production and the whio is a beacon from mother nature indicating a river's health.
"If they are present the water is considered pristine. We're pleased the growing success of Blue Duck Rare Vodka can continue to help protect the blue duck and its environment."
New rankings show Waikato university having a real impact
The latest Times Higher Education Impact Rankings have confirmed the University of Waikato is delivering on its promise to provide forward-thinking research and education.
The University of Waikato, which has a Tauranga CBD campus, has been recognised as being in the top 5 per cent of universities in the world in the 2022 Times Higher Education Impact Rankings.
The Impact Rankings, now in its fourth year, assess how institutions are contributing to the United Nations' 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) - the key issues identified as the most pressing facing humanity and the planet.
The University of Waikato is now ranked sixth in the world for #15 Life on Land; in the top 25 for #14 Life Below Water; and in the top 55 for # 13 Climate Action and #16 Peace, Justice and Strong Institutions.
Assistant vice-chancellor of sustainability, Professor Lynda Johnston, said the University was encouraged by the result.
"As a university, we have unique responsibilities to progress the SDGs to create a fairer future and a cleaner planet."
University of Waikato vice-chancellor, Professor Neil Quigley, said the move up the rankings illustrates the university's dedication to leading the way in science and climate change research and teaching.
"To improve our ratings in these categories is a great achievement. It shows that we are not only teaching and researching the things that matter most to our future generations, we are making real, practical and long lasting changes to our planet.
"By nurturing an interdisciplinary approach across the university, from environmental, earth and marine sciences to social sciences and indigenous studies, we are creating opportunities and knowledge that will have a critical impact on future generations."