A number of property developers in the CBD are complaining about the values which they are being offered for their properties, and may force CERA into using their powers of compulsory acquisition. This obviously isn’t the first article to cover this, but it really seems like the owners are digging in now. As some of us predicted when the blueprint was first announced, it’s given a hand up to a select few developers, whilst giving the finger to others. 

Developer Antony Gough was on the other side of the fence, urging land owners to be ”more realistic”. He said the eastern frame was ”a desert, even before the earthquakes”.

Interesting. I lived in a flat that is now going to be included in the eastern frame, and I don’t recall it being particularly desert-like. In fact, this part of the city, which Gough is so dismissive of, was much more vital and alive than the scummy run-down bars at the end of town which he lorded over. Gough is getting a sweet deal from the CCDU, as one of the developers whose property portfolio is being propped up by CERA limiting the supply of land. His encouraging people to be “more realistic” is just pure self-interest.

When you look at some of the figures being quoted in the story, you can see why these landowners might have a bit of a gripe.

Landowners say CCDU’s property group is making offers that are ”off the planet”. An independent valuation of a Lichfield St site owned by KPI Rothschild Property Group, showed the land was worth about $850,000. The CCDU valuation came back at about $275,000.

These property owners are stuck between a rock and a hard place. It will be really interesting to see what happens if they go past the CCDU deadline, and one of these cases ends up in court. 

Lisle Hood, who owns several Lichfield Lanes precinct sites, said the Government was not treating landowners in ”good faith”. ”Compulsory acquisition [followed by a legal fight] is likely to have a far better outcome for us,” Hood said.

But the whole sorry story goes to show who the government are looking after: property developers – and even, just a select few of them. 

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