6 of the 11 industrial lots in block 1 of the Drury South Crossing development zone down the Southern Motorway out of Auckland have been sold. 2 more are unavailable, leaving 3 still on the market.
3 of the 13 lots in block 2 have been sold, 2 are unavailable and one is under contract – 7 still available.
The sold lots range from about 1000m² up to 3.44ha.
Image above: Drury South Crossing’s masterplan – housing nearest the motorway, industrial back towards the quarry, commercial in the middle, open space where the creek wends its way through the floodplain.
Even now, a decade after initial development planning began, Drury is a place you pass on State Highway 1 at speed. In the background is a quarry carved out of the hillside, in the foreground there were cows. This was rural Auckland, and its transformation into a major urban hub has begun.
Stevenson Group Ltd, best known as a trucking company but also the owner & operator of infrastructure necessities such as quarries & concrete supplies, has gone through the long processes of rezoning and designing the future for Drury South’s 361ha, getting the land rezoned in 2013 for a mix of industrial & business development, and this month enters a marketing phase.
The company has done one thing that politicians around the region largely failed to do over the last 2 decades: produce a supply of large-lot industrial land. That & efficient access are keys to Auckland’s prosperity.
Drury South Crossing will serve a multitude of needs:
- an industrial hub
- a portion for residential development, plus some commercial
- improvement of water flows & water quality
- new jobs in South Auckland
- the incentive for numerous new transport links – an improved road to Pukekohe, the Mill Rd connection up through Manukau, a new railway station, an industrial base with good access to ports, central Auckland and to the regions immediately to the south.
To focus on the development, Stevenson has sold its quarry business to Fulton Hogan Ltd (although the Huntly quarry has been pulled from the transaction following Commerce Commission concerns). It’s also sold the 50ha residential development site, nearest the motorway, to Classic Group, which will build about 800 houses on it (starting price point $580,000, midpoint $680,000). The first homes should be available this year.
An impetus for swathes of housing development
Since it got the land rezoned, Stevenson’s project has also been the impetus for large swathes of residential development on nearby farmland. Kiwi Property Group Ltd bought 51ha to create a town centre, Karaka & Drury Ltd (Charles Ma) has begun work on 2 residential developments at Drury, the first for 68ha and the second for 85ha, set to yield about 2700 homes plus a village centre, and Fulton Hogan has acquired land for about 2000 homes.
Across the motorway & further north, the Hugh Green Group is preparing 97ha to take 2000 homes in its Park Estate subdivision, and has just opened it up to expressions of interest.
The mix localises industrial jobs
Stephen Hughes, chief executive of Stevenson’s Drury South Crossing project, expects some staff at businesses in its industrial subdivision will bike to work along cycleways from these new suburbs. Within 13km of this new business hub, the population is anticipated to grow to 60,000.
Among the unusual features of Drury South Crossing – given the extra word in its name to signify its role at the heart of new transport links – 90ha of passive amenity & waterspace has been set aside to manage the floodplain, where the borders of creeks feeding into the Hingaia Stream will be greatly enhanced.
One big change enabling all this development was the completion of Auckland Council’s unitary plan in 2016, providing for far more intensification in existing suburbs and marking greenfields as future urban zones, effectively dismantling the rural:urban boundaries established in the 1990s.
Mr Hughes said without that change, Stevenson wouldn’t have secured the political support to develop outside the MUL (the metropolitan urban limits). The second change allowing Drury (and other centres) to forge ahead was the last government’s scheme for special housing areas. Although few houses were developed quickly, those areas were earmarked for housing and development is starting to occur.
Meanwhile, the Stevenson focus is on the industrial land, broken into large blocks and, in the case of blocks 1 & 2, broken down into smaller lots and already selling.
Block 3 has about 20ha at the moment, and some buyers are looking for that amount of land: “There are 3 requests for a block that size we’re in discussions on,” Mr Hughes said in December.
Potential occupants of those bigger sites are both manufacturers & distributors, and logistics companies that will service the upper North Island from this base.
Drury South Crossing is expected to create over 5000 jobs directly and 10,000 more indirectly in the Auckland region. Economic analysis by Market Economics Ltd puts the direct financial contribution into local gdp at $800 million/year, plus $2.3billion/year into regional gdp. The construction phase alone is expected to contribute $700 million to gdp.
BDeep articles aimed at giving you context
- This is the first of the new BDeep focus articles in The Bob Dey Property Reporton development around the region.
You’ll see a different style of presentation here – pieces of information, not a single long, complete article. So, over time, you’ll be able to build up a picture of areas around the region, putting development in context.
Today’s piece hardly scratches the surface of Drury South’s context. With regular contributions, you’ll see the gaps filled in.
Link: Drury South Crossing
Some of the earlier stories:
16 October 2018: Fulton Hogan drops Huntly quarry from Stevenson purchase, Commerce Commission happy
22 September 2017: Kiwi Property settles second Drury site purchase
10 September 2017: Second round for Auranga precinct confirms Drury as major growth centre
2 July 2014: Report indicates acute shortage of industrial land likely, but key land advocates don’t press for specific measures
30 June 2014: Report says business land supply “at best” meets 5-year demand
30 August 2013: Drury South industrial area plan change & MUL extension approved
Attribution: Company releases, interview, website.