A 33-unit, $17.5 million apartment block on a tiny site is being opened today, challenging car-centric Aucklanders by offering not a single private car park.
But local businesses are concerned the absence of car parks won't equate to a lack of cars and new tenants will make parking even more competitive than it already is.
In what could be a glimpse of a less car-dependent Auckland, Ockham Residential is opening its radical new Daisy apartment block at 11 Akepiro St off Charles St, between New North Rd and Dominion Rd in a city fringe area.
The one- and two-bedroom block has extensive cycle parking but challenges the traditional basement garage model whereby apartment buyers usually try to get at least one bay per unit or even more if they have enough money.
"In lieu of private car parks Daisy has 12 scooter parks, 40 bicycle spaces and two shared cars for the use of residents, run through the Cityhop model," Ockham said yesterday.Read more: Auckland's car park crunch - 'there's not a single car park for us'
Daisy apartment owners with cars will have to park them on the streets.
The owners of Fuel Conversions & Automotive Repairs, on the other end of the short Mt Eden road, said the lack of parks in the new build would "without doubt" affect their business.
Sue Golding had run the business for more than two decades with her husband, Ross.
"There is absolutely nowhere to park around here anyway," she said.
"We have a guy that comes in at 6am every morning just to move cars from the shop where they've been overnight, on to the street so we've got space to work."
Husband Ross echoed her concerns: "The fact of the matter is, if there are no car parks available then we're buggered - after 25 years here."
Mark Todd, Ockham's co-founder, said he wanted to set a new standard for sustainable living. Building not a single private car park would pave the way for "a new wave of international-style, public transport-focused apartment projects.
"Auckland is growing rapidly. We will be the size of Sydney in 30 years. The progressive mandates of the Auckland Plan and the Auckland Unitary Plan promote the creative use of urban land and dispense with dated car-centric rules," he said.
"Public transport and autonomous call vehicles are the future for urban residents.
"Buildings like Daisy are a response to growing confidence and ambition of Aucklanders to build and live in a world-class sustainable city," Todd said.
Mayor Phil Goff said Auckland was experiencing severe pressure in housing and "more intensive and environmentally friendly housing developments are what we need to bring affordability back into the market and provide more homes to Aucklanders".
"This complex reduces congestion on our roads with a carsharing scheme provided instead of car parks and council worked closely with Ockham to bring this development to the finish line," he said.
Helen O'Sullivan, Ockham chief executive, said deposits had been paid on 30 of the 33 new units and buyers were about to shift in.
Units sold for an average $530,000. The block site is only 320sq m and just 80m from one of the city's busiest bus routes.
At Mt Eden's 67-unit, five-level Botanica Living on Enfield St, by Greg Reidy's McDougall Reidy and builder Hayden & Rollett, no car parks were offered with eight one-bedroom units but Vespa scooters were sold with parking.
That project has 100 car parks but Reidy said the scooter offer resolved transport issues for buyers of one-bedroom places while allowing larger units to be sold with two car parking spaces. That met both ends of the market.
At 32-34 Tennyson Ave, Takapuna, 16 units have been proposed with no car parks. Car-stacker machines have instead been planned there maximise use of space. Two five-level blocks with 53 units and 43 car parks are proposed. Six pairs of stacked parking in the two-level basement with bike stands.