Archive | Vulcan Lane

Queen’s Ferry & O’Carrolls on Vulcan Lane both sold

Published 7 April 2010

The Queen’s Ferry Hotel on Vulcan Lane has sold post-auction for $2.6 million and the O’Carrolls Irish bar building next door has also sold, but with a confidentiality clause on the price.


Both were sold by London Property Investments Ltd (Richard Lyon, son of longtime Vulcan Lane property investor Mark Lyon), which also sold the third pub building in this strip last year, the Occidental, for $4.35 million.


The Queen’s Ferry, at 12 Vulcan Lane, was passed in at $2.52 million following good bidding when Bayleys Real Estate took it to auction through its Total Property portfolio last week.


The 118m² 3-level building is reputed to be Auckland’s oldest pub and is fully leased to Hunter & Co Ltd (David Combs) on an 8-year lease from 2004, with 3 rights of renewal of 4 years each. The Queens Ferry was built in 1858 and granted a liquor licence in 1865.


It was sold by a Bayleys team of Henry Thompson, Stuart Bode & Robert Platt at a yield of 6.8%, which Mr Thompson said reflected its prime position in one of the cbd’s most sought-after retail destinations. The 3 were also involved in the sale of the neighbouring O’Carrolls, which was also featured in Total Property and sold for a confidential sum before the close of tenders scheduled for today.


The O’Carrolls bar operator, the Irish Bar Co Ltd, was among 4 of Craig Ling’s Auckland bar companies placed in receivership by South Canterbury Finance Ltd last November. Its tenancy runs out in September. Lenin Ltd & Minus 5 Auckland Ltd operate bars on Princes Wharf. The fourth Ling company, Fusion Management & Holdings Ltd, provided management & accounting services to the other 3.


Mr Ling expanded his New Zealand bar business 2 years ago to Australia, Portugal & the US 2 years ago, but the domestic business struck trouble last year. The 3 bar companies in receivership & 4 others settled an application by the group’s accountants, WHK Gosling Chapman, to wind them up in April 2009 and 12 related bar companies headed by Barry Botherway, Christchurch, went into receivership in June-July 2009.


O’Carrolls occupied the ground floor & basement at 10 Vulcan Lane, with 3 floors above that in unrelated tenancies, including the Lyon businesses on one floor.


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Attribution: Bayleys release, Companies Office searches, story written by Bob Dey for the Bob Dey Property Report.

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3 Vulcan Lane pubs passed in

Published 27 June 2008

Bids totalling $8.8 million weren’t enough to buy any of the pubs on Vulcan Lane when they went to auction as part of Bayleys Real Estate’s latest Total Property offering on Wednesday.


6 & 8 Vulcan Lane (The Occidental) was passed in at $3.7 million, No 10 (O’Carroll’s) at $3 million and No 12 (Queen’s Ferry Hotel) at $2.125 million.


I’ll have more detail from the Total Property auction at the weekend.


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Attribution: Bayleys auction list, story written by Bob Dey for this website.

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Vulcan Lane upgrade starts Thursday

Published 2 April 2007

Vulcan Lane is to get its upgrade, starting on Thursday. Picture is an artist’s impression on completion.

Preparatory work on lower Vulcan Lane (between Queen & High Sts in the cbd) will start with initial marking and then lifting of pavers in 2m-wide strips along the northern & southern sides. The pavers will be taken off-site for cleaning – mostly at night – and areas of temporary asphalt will be laid to maintain safe access into adjoining businesses.

Planning for the upgrade began in 2004, but came to a halt when protests were made about the proposed bluestone pavers.

Project manager Eric van Essen said the upgrade was “all about repairing, restoring, better safety and giving people a high-quality environment to shop & socialise in. Vulcan Lane is unique to Auckland and getting this project right has been paramount.

“We set up a reference group consisting of businesses, residents & owner representatives to ensure that our design & implementation processes were well tested & communicated. We also co-ordinated the Vulcan Lane works with the upgrade on Queen St to minimise overall disruption.”

Main works on the lower lane will run from 30 April-30 July and for the upper lane, from 30 June-28 July. The lane will stay open throughout.

The project was priced at $1.2 million in 2005. It’s part of a $134 million cbd streetscape & open space upgrade.

Council website section: CBD into the future

Vulcan project


Earlier stories:

11 June 2006: Council seeks feedback on revised Vulcan Lane concept

16 October 2005: Councillors opt for “policy on the fly” on Vulcan Lane tiles

3 March 2005: Upgrade to entice tui down into Vulcan Lane


Want to comment? Click on The new BD Central Forum or email [email protected].


Attribution: Council release, story written by Bob Dey for this website.

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Council seeks feedback on revised Vulcan Lane concept

Published 11 June 2006

Jurisdiction: Auckland City

Neighbourhood: Queen St Valley

Applicant: Council

Application detail: Vulcan Lane revised draft concept plans, public feedback

Feedback: The concept design will be available for public feedback from 12-25 June. The designs will be displayed in the Heart of the City offices (Level 2, 55-57 High St, down the back lane into Little High St) throughout the consultation period and council staff will give a presentation and answer questions on the design there on Monday 19 June at 6pm & 7pm.

The council will also have a display tent on Vulcan Lane from 8-10am on Monday 19 June and from 11.30am-2pm on Wednesday & Friday 21 & 23 June.

Submission forms will be available at the displays or on the council website – but neither the concept designs nor the submission forms were accessible this weekend via the most obvious place to look, the Vulcan project page.

Details: The council proposes to retain as many of the existing Vulcan Lane pavers as possible and use replica pavers to fill any gaps.

The aim is to maintain & enhance the existing character of the unique pedestrian-only shopping & entertainment area with a focus on repair, restoration & safety.

Auckland mayor Dick Hubbard said: “The new restoration-based designs respond to the public feedback that people wanted the character, look & feel of Vulcan Lane to be retained.

“At the same time, we believe we have struck a balance with the need to ensure this part of the city becomes a better, safer place for pedestrians & businesses.

“We recognise that Vulcan Lane is a unique part of the cbd. Its upgrade will contribute to our long-term strategy of making Auckland’s cbd one of the world’s most vibrant & dynamic business & cultural centres.”

The new concept plan includes pebble paving, introduction of new street furniture and options for additional & different trees. Improvements to the layout of vegetation in Vulcan Lane would improve views into the lane and make it easier for pedestrians to move about. New lighting and shallower drainage channels would make the lane safer.

The proposed restoration of the lane’s existing paving would cost more and take longer than replacing them with new ones, but it would ensure the unique warmth & character of Vulcan Lane was maintained.

The council would need to lift all the existing pavers and undertake drainage and infrastructure work before relaying restored original pavers & replicas.

Council website section: CBD into the future

Vulcan project


Earlier stories:

16 October 2005: Councillors opt for “policy on the fly” on Vulcan Lane tiles

3 March 2005: Upgrade to entice tui down into Vulcan Lane


Want to comment? Click on The new BD Central Forum or email [email protected].


Attribution: Council release, story written by Bob Dey for this website.

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Councillors opt for “policy on the fly” on Vulcan Lane tiles

Published 16 October 2005

“This is like making policy on the fly,” Cllr Scott Milne said during the debate on Monday, 10 October, on what kind of tiles Vulcan Lane should have.

Auckland City Council, like all councils, has to go to incredible lengths of consultation on public works nowadays, and for its cbd upgrade it has consultations street by street.

You could argue that the inundation of consultations is overpowering, and that immediately affected people can easily overlook important changes as a result.

The council did flag its intention to repave cbd footpaths with bluestone tiles – a pity because, while they look smart initially, they’re slippery when wet, and when they crack & chip they leave jagged edges, more so than Vulcan Lane’s existing pebble-filled tiles.

Rather than play round with slip-promoting tiles, I’d rather see the council deal with pedestrians the way it does with vehicles – give them stable surfaces that don’t have a high-angle slope. Quite new footpath replacements – some of the bluestone along High St and the bricks on Customs St West outside Quay Tower & the Southpac Tower – treat pedestrians like they’re mountain goats. The Vulcan Lane tiles, while well worn, present a safer & more easily negotiated surface.

The council’s urban strategy & governance committee had a presentation on Monday from Andrew Bishop, of the High St District Association, supporting the continuing use of Vulcan Lane’s existing tiles. He said 90% were in good order and replacing them “seems to be an incredible waste of money.”

The council staff were taken by surprise by a vehement response to their Vulcan Lane tile replacement proposal, which they countered by suggesting restoration & “similar look & feel” rather than replacement. Construction on the lower lane would start April-August 2006, phased in with the Queen St upgrade, and possibly January 2007 in the upper lane.

Councillors rejected delaying for a working party to look at the issue and voted 7-3 for Mr Bishop’s preferred repair & restore despite a staff statement that “this is not a good long-term solution in terms of achieving a high-quality environment for a further 50-year horizon. It does not address safety issues in the lane, with people slipping over, and existing pavers are not expected to last the distance.”

The council’s new chief executive, David Rankin, mentioned that “there’s the need to keep the overview, as well as what individual groups might want.” That, too, was rejected.

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Upgrade to entice tui down into Vulcan Lane

Published: 3 March 2005

Vulcan Lane is to get bird-feeder stands to encourage tui into the cbd as part of a $1.2 million upgrade of the lane, which runs between Queen & O’Connell Sts, crossing High St.

The upgrade finance will come from the cbd targeted rate, while the designers of the upgrade hope the tui will make their way down from Albert Park.

I’ve always found tui are more concerned about their exit strategy than even the most cautious of investors, and to get into Vulcan Lane they’ll need to turn a few corners. But the upgrade designers believe the tui colony living in Albert Park can be coaxed into the built-up environment once they get to know there will be 5 nectar feeders at the Queen St end of the lane.

Project manager Eric van Essen said in a report to Auckland City Council’s arts, culture & recreation committee yesterday the tui feeders would be design as an environmental artwork: “They would function along the same lines as manual feeders already in use by the department of Conservation. However they would be fully automated and would provide a continuous supply of syrup, be self-flushing and would include protection against wasps & ants.

“Drinking fountains for human visitors to Vulcan Lane would be built into the feeders’ support poles.”

Mr van Essen said nectar wasn’t a food source for seagulls, sparrows or pigeons.

And if the birds don’t come? The feeders could be removed & replaced with a sculpture, Mr van Essen said.

He told the committee Vulcan Lane hadn’t been upgraded since 1968 – and some property owners & tenants at the top end, between High & O’Connell Sts, didn’t see much need for an upgrade at all. (Picture, incidentally, shows the artistic washing placed above that part of the lane recently as a feature in the council’s Living Room series, which was aimed at getting people to look at the cbd in a new light. Click on the image to enlarge).

Among the enhancements, Vulcan Lane will get bluestone paving, a chevron pattern blasted on to the paving in the lower lane and a tree fern, light & rubbish bin at the apex of each pattern, new seats and the bird feeders.

The upgrade follows 4 concept options designed in November by landscape architect Leo Jew, along with 4 suites of amenities & furnishings. “The aim is a high-quality but low-key look,” Mr van Essen said.

Councillors also want a plaque indicating the lane’s history, something which might also be done elsewhere.

After criticism of upgrades seriously damaging trade on other streets, Mr van Essen said the work on Vulcan Lane would phased, broken into small sections, and timed to avoid work coinciding with major events or busy retail periods.

Website: Council agenda item


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