Download The Wellington App for more stories like this.

Eastern Porirua to receive $1.5b housing regeneration

The Government has announced that it will spend $1.5 billion over 25 years to revitalise housing in eastern Porirua, with plans for 2000 new KiwiBuild homes and 2900 renewed state houses.

The Eastern Porirua regeneration will transform the suburbs of Ranui, Cannons Creek, Waitangirua and Ascot Park. The partnership with Ngāti Toa in the west will renew public housing in Titihi Bay, Mana and Tawa.

Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said yesterday that the Government will work closely with Ngāti Toa and the Porirua City Council on the biggest and most ambitious regeneration since eastern Porirua was built 60 years ago.

“We will be building new homes and other facilities that will greatly improve the wellbeing of thousands of families and support this community so it can be healthier, safer and more connected.”

The regeneration will primarily be led by HLC, a subsidiary company of Housing NZ, and will renew and build 2900 state homes and at least 2000 affordable KiwiBuild and market homes in Porirua – the first KiwiBuild homes announced in the Wellington region.

Kelvin Davis acknowledged the role Ngāti Toa had played in making the regeneration of eastern Porirua possible and celebrated this being the first partnership for his Māori Crown Relations: Te Arawhiti portfolio.

“The Government and Ngāti Toa are united in wanting to improve public housing across Porirua. We are looking to enter into a partnership with the iwi where they will upgrade public housing in in Titahi Bay, Mana, Tawa, Takapuwhaia and Elsdon, while managing and upgrading 900 Housing NZ properties and tenancies in those areas.

“Ngāti Toa is already a major health services provider in Porirua. Through their five medical centres and dental clinic they provide medical treatment for Porirua residents – regardless of whether they are iwi members or not. They will now have a base to establish themselves as a public housing provider and expand the range of services they provide the community,” said Davis.

Phil Twyford said that many of the 2000 state homes in eastern Porirua will be replaced with a mix of public housing as well as affordable KiwiBuild and market homes in suburbs that include Ascot Park, Waitangirua, Cannons Creek and Ranui. There will also be 150 additional new homes added to the public housing stock elsewhere in Porirua.

“As a result of today’s announcement, not only will eastern Porirua public housing tenants get new housing, but all of Porirua will benefit from the jobs created, and from having people attracted to the area by new affordable, KiwiBuild starter homes.

“All existing tenants in eastern and western Porirua will continue to be housed under the terms of their current tenancy agreement, and will continue to have access to the help and support that all public housing tenants can access.

“This redevelopment is the fourth that we have announced across New Zealand to provide thousands of families with new homes, and is the first Government project to be approved under a wellbeing framework,” Phil Twyford said.

The $1.5 billion programme was unveiled by Prime Ministe Jacinda Ardern (centre), Minister for Māori Crown Relations Kelvin Davis (left) and Housing and Urban Development Minister Phil Twyford at an event with Ngāti Toa Rangātira (Ngāti Toa) and the Porirua City Council in eastern Porirua yesterday.

Mana MP Kris Faafoi said that the residents of eastern Porirua had been given false hope over many years, with promises of change that had not materialised.

“This Porirua community has, through leadership of its churches, residents and fundraisers, built their own halls, meeting places and parks and playgrounds. Residents have fought hard to create a community for their children and grandchildren here.

“Like all New Zealanders, they deserve warm, dry, decent houses. This Government is going to deliver that finally. We will work with the eastern Porirua community to make this regeneration a reality,” Faafoi said.

Porirua City Council applauded yesterday’s announcement.

“This is a sea change moment for our city,” said Mayor Mike Tana. “Although many Porirua residents enjoy some of the highest household incomes in the country, we’ve been all too aware of the struggles some of our families have. Now these families can look forward to having warm, dry, affordable homes for their tamariki and whānau.

“With Transmission Gully opening in 2020 and current work that we’re doing on a Growth Strategy for the city and a review of our District Plan – this is a further exciting opportunity for Porirua to grow into maturity. This investment is going to stimulate economic activity and create greater opportunities for everyone in our city.”

Porirua City Council Chief Executive Wendy Walker said this is the biggest Government investment since Porirua became a city in 1965.

“The HLC team brings a wealth of experience to the project. HLC has built a development model, refined from their 10 plus years working in Hobsonville, which allows them to deliver large-scale housing projects within a relatively short timeframe.”

She said the Porirua Development will form part of the wider Porirua Growth Strategy.

“We’ll be consulting with residents later this month about the wider Porirua Growth Strategy, and HLC will be consulting with the community about Porirua regeneration early next year.

“It’s crucial that the people who live and work in the city share their invaluable local knowledge and experience – good and bad – so that information can be factored in to our planning for Porirua.”

“Porirua is at a real crossroads with Transmission Gully, Kenepuru Landing, the proposed Adventure Park – and now the Porirua Development. They will all have a big impact on our city in the coming years.

“That’s why we need to shape the change and growth of our city and understand the challenges and opportunities Porirua is going to face in the longer term.”

HLC, which is leading the development, will be based at the Cannons Creek Shopping Centre car park over the next few months, for residents to drop-in and learn more about the project.

More information on the project can be found at www.poriruadevelopment.co.nz.