More than 2000 houses could be on the Hamilton's market within the next few years as Hamilton City Council fights a rising housing crisis in the city.

Last year the city council signed off on Hamilton's Special Housing Act to help increase the number of homes in a depleted market.

SHAs are proposed areas of land (including sites not currently zoned for residential) in the city that can be put forward for housing development by landowners or developers for consideration by the Council.

The Special Housing Act has raised the eyebrows of National MP for Hamilton East David
Bennett, who said that developers may take advantage of the consent process.


"They have seen that this is a great opportunity, rather than having to go through a longer term process," Mr Bennett said.

"Whether they [the developers] actually do them to reach the price point [— under the 500k of KiwiBuild] is another question, but to actually get them through a development process approval I think there will be a lot more of that."

In April, the council signed off on its first special housing area at Jebson Place, with 71 new homes to be built. Five other applications are either with central Government, or awaiting signed legal agreement.

Two applications could mean up to 2400 homes are built in Rotokauri and Te Awa Lakes.
In the Te Awa Lakes development 1000 homes will be built on a triangular block of land owned by Perry Group, which borders the Waikato Expressway and the Waikato River. The area is north of Te Rapa, towards Horotiu.

A 133ha area of Rotokauri — rural land bordering the Waikato District, would have more than 1400 homes built if approved.

Concerns such as schools and roading were brought up over the Rotokauri development, as the city is currently not growing in that direction.

"If you have very constrained areas where you have a lot of housing, then you have to service it with buses and things like that because you now have a higher population issue."

At the start of the year, Mayor Andrew King said that the Minister for Housing Phil Twyford wanted the Labour-led government's KiwiBuild policy to also be included within SHAs.


The council is aiming for at least 40 per cent of the houses in SHAs to be under the median house price.

Labour list MP Jamie Strange said KiwiBuild will provide a larger supply of housing in Hamilton.

"It will add to the supply of houses under $500,000," Mr Strange said.

"It will be for a range of housing from one bedroom to three bedroom.

"There is a shortage of a diverse range of properties in Hamilton."

He said that 42 per cent of Hamiltonians are renting, and that KiwiBuild will help these people get to their first home.

Mr Bennett said that KiwiBuild is raising more questions than answers over the quality of housing.

"There are potentially going to be issues around the materials used in the houses."

"To meet that price point it is going to be really small housing, and that's not going to achieve the purpose of trying to house families."

Mr Bennett said a slower economy over the next two years will push people to Australia, and open up current houses to the public.