A Takapuna homeowner says his place will be a "s***hole" when a nine-level apartment block rises next door soon but the developer has hit back, complaining about difficulties at the site and a near-miss vehicle incident.
John Hill, who owns one of two townhouses at 10a Auburn St near the Anzac St intersection, is furious about the new 21-unit Alba apartment development, rising at 10 Auburn St in front of his place, on a site of about 500sq m and only 4m from his place.
"My house will be a s***hole," Hill said referring to his two-level home's loss of privacy, shading from the neighbouring block, its dominance, increased noise levels, traffic problems, parking issues, noise from car stackers in the new block, apartment rubbish bins facing his place, the right-of-way being narrowed from 4m to just over 2m and other issues.
"I will have a nine-storey apartment block or tenement building -whatever way you want to look at it - right on my boundary," Hill said.
"People couldn't even stay here during the pile-driving," Hill complained of initial site works.
Woodview Construction is at below-ground foundation level on the site which is near the six-level Sargeson Apartments being built on the former site of The Block homes from the television series on Anzac St.
Gary Gordon of Legacy Property, developing Alba beside Hill's place, indicated work at that site has been difficult, even though attempts had been made to ease the situation.
"We have tried everything possible to assist them and their tenants whilst we are building but they refuse," Gordon said.
"Unfortunately they have been abusive to our consultants and agents, threatened to go on site and cut stuff down, lodged false noise complaints when no machines were on site, made up health and safety complaints and more. I have never seen anything like this in my career," Gordon said.
Hill said he had hardly ever visited the site and denied a near-miss vehicle incident report which Woodview lodged against the driver of Hill's blue ute, "driving at excessive speeds with no regard for pedestrian or worker safety adjacent to the site."
Hill denied the near-miss, asked why a complaint had not been made to the police but said he was not interested in getting into a "slanging match" about issues.
Auckland Council says Takapuna has been up-zoned for more density and higher buildings in the Unitary Plan. The area is one of only a few major metropolitan town centres due to its infrastructure including transport links, location and other favourable aspects.
Hill's home is directly opposite the town centre's CBD.
He does not live there but rents it out after his marriage broke up, saying he and his wife both now rented elsewhere. His retirement plans had been ruined because his home would be worth so much less when Alba was finished, he said. He realised a few years ago that there could be issues and tried to quit.
"We did try to sell it about two years ago but we couldn't. We were asking $900,000," he said of the home now valued at more than $1m.
Kelly Reid, who lives next door to Hill's place at 10b Auburn St which is owned by her parents, outlined many issues.
"The development has been pretty stressful this past year. We feel as though it is not an appropriate building for the space and should definitely have not been non-notified. It has had an massive impact on our day-to-day lives, last year the spiral drilling was so loud we could not be in our homes. Our driveway has been an issue with it being blocked on a regular bases for the builders/workers to do unloading to the site," Reid complained.
But Legacy operations manager Claire Beazley said the driveway was owned by Auburn Street Trustees, not the townhouse owners. Woodview was therefore permitted to use the driveway for deliveries and site access, she said. The contractor could have full use of the driveway, she said citing a lawyer's letter.