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Communities over golf courses – Conor Hill’s plan for more affordable more homes

Media release from Conor Hill
Half of the Berhampore Golf Course could be transformed into affordable homes and facilities for the community, if Wellington voters elect Conor Hill as Mayor this October.

“As anyone who has tried to rent or buy a house in Wellington recently will tell you, our city is in dire need of more homes. Yet 5 kilometres from the Beehive, we have a golf course heavily subsidized by Wellington ratepayers, which only has 100 members” said Conor Hill. “At a time when the number of applicants on the social housing register in Wellington has almost doubled, this is a poor use of valuable land[1].”

“Nine holes of golf would become 50% community facilities and a mixture of 50% social, affordable and market homes. For the community facilities I propose a co-design with the south Wellington community as to what they would like.”

Hill is calling on Central Government to get behind the proposal: “Central government needs to allow Wellington to build genuine community facilities and homes on what is currently 9 holes of Berhampore Golf Course. This would require Berhampore Golf Course to be removed from the Wellington Town Belt.”

“With nine holes of this golf course, let’s build a beautiful mix of community facilities and homes. It’s a win-win. Golfers can keep playing. The south Wellington community will have more community facilities. In this time of dire housing shortage, there will be more homes in Wellington.

“For the social homes, this is a great location for some of the 750 social and affordable homes that Justin Lester promised 2 years ago. The remaining homes could be market or Kiwibuild.”


· “The typical town belt character is poorly developed in this sector due to the open nature of the golf course” – This is direct from section 8.6 of the town belt management plan, p 135

· p.135 of the same management plan has the golf course size at 37.1 hectares (91 acres).

· 25 players or fewer using the course daily comes from this article.

· 100 members from Andy Foster quote in this article. This also has the cost to the council at $150,000 which equates to $1500 per member.

· From December 16 to March 19, the number of applicants on the social housing register in Wellington has gone from 183 to 361 – almost doubled. You can go hereand download the spreadsheet and look on the TA – summary tab.

· The same spreadsheet has a TAB called TA – priority. This has over 300 applicants in Wellington city as Priority A – “The household is unable to access and/or sustain suitable, adequate and affordable alternative housing.”

· If we use 9 – 10 hectares (a quarter of the entire 37.1 hectare golf course) for housing we could get somewhere between 6-800 houses at a medium density (up to three stories). This would be similar to the Altair development in Newtown – see page 3. The Altair is an exemplar used by council for medium density housing.

· Over the past three years average house prices have increased 14% per annum.

[1]From December 2016 to March 2019, the number of applicants on the social housing register in Wellington has gone from 183 to 361.

Via Wellington.scoop