One the one hand, I think this is a good initiative. The council land from the old Henderson deal being using for housing. They look good and Welles St would be a great place to live at the moment.

On the other hand, the old “affordable” chestnut comes up again. $450,000 is affordable? Affordable for whom? There are still actual houses with actual backyards for sale in Christchurch under $400,000. Some aren’t much more than $300,000. So I can’t see how an apartment, with no land attached, on the outskirts of a CBD with little to no amenity value, can justify a $450k price tag. Or more than that, as 80% of the units will be. It might be affordable relative to Auckland, but this isn’t Auckland.

I’m genuinely interested in what the comparative cost of something similar in Wellington or Dunedin might be, and whether the economics of this stack up.

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