The first of three stages in the development of a retirement complex in Cooper's Beach is progressing well. After years of delays working through the planning process, it is nearing the point where sales can be made. Building consents are now being prepared for the first four homes.
The site is a 10-minute walk from the Cooper's Beach shops, pharmacy, doctor's surgery and dentist, even closer to the St John ambulance station, with the bowling club and tennis club nearby.
Every dwelling will have a sea view, the site consisting of natural terraces. In conjunction with roading, all the sites are benched to provide a level building area, and retaining walls are being built where needed.
Each of the three stages will comprise approximately 22 units, a mix of two- and three-bedroom homes, most free standing but some as duplex or triplex construction.
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The Stage 1 roading has been formed, and concreting of is close to completion, with water, power and telephone all in place underground. Fibre connections are available.
The overall plan includes a rest home that will initially provide 40 beds, expanding to 80 over time. The retirement complex forms a semi-circle, and the rest home, while a separate entity, will be within that semi-circle. While clearly providing the potential for village residents for transition from independent living to care, the rest home will be open to the wider community.
In a diversion from common structures for retirement villages, a neighbourhood spokesman said, residents would have freehold title to their individual properties, and joint ownership of common areas and facilities. Covenants would protect the retirement aspect by limiting the age and numbers of persons per unit. It would be managed as an incorporated society, with a committee of owners. It would be a gated community, for security.
"The elderly in the community are in serious need of the village," Bob Vartan said.
"As it stands now, anyone wanting to move into retirement living must move to Kerikeri, Whangārei or further afield. This often removes people from their friends, clubs and support networks, with resulting mental stress and even anguish.
"The developer and the small committee of locals who have been involved in the planning and implementation of this project are excited to be part of providing such an essential piece of infrastructure for the community."