Blue line shows property boundaries of 100 Halsey. Photo / Colliers
Infratil is negotiating to sell its $100 million-plus 1.7ha central Auckland leasehold investment property in the Wynyard Quarter.
Andrew Lamb, Infratil Infrastructure property development director, said a deal might be announced before the end
of this year for the property Colliers marketed during the winter as 100 Halsey.
“We’re working with parties at the moment to try to get to that point. Naturally, with the current market, it could take a little longer than expected.
“Parties are doing due diligence and we’re trying to get everyone across the line,” he said.
Buyers were told to express their interest by early July but negotiations are under way and continuing, Lamb said.
Others said rising interest rates had deterred buyers from other purchases and this year’s only big investment deal was the Northlands, Papanui, conditional sale by Kiwi for $160m,.
Colliers marketed Infratil Infrastructure Property’s 100 Halsey, which is the NZ Bus site, new Travelodge, car park and undeveloped land.
Jason Seymour, Richard Kirke and Dean Humphries ran the sales campaign.
Lamb told the Herald two years ago the site could take a further $500m of investment.
But Infratil’s decision to sell gave a signal it wanted others to realise that potential.
The land is owned by Viaduct Harbour Holdings on a perpetually renewable 21-year rent review Glasgow lease. It is a near-fully developed city block bounded by Halsey St, Gaunt St and Pakenham St West.
The Glasgow lease next comes up for review in 2035 when it could spiral massively. No figures are being revealed about how much Infratil pays Viaduct Harbour Holdings annually to lease the land.
The block has the new seven-level 154-room Travelodge Hotel Auckland Wynyard Quarter, 385-space Wynyard Carpark, Countdown Metro Supermarket, six other shops and offices and the potential for a further $500m of development.
All future stages of the development are subject to a long-term lease to NZ Bus providing substantial rental income with inflation-linked growth through to 2035, Colliers said.
There is provision for a partial lease surrender to enable earlier development on approximately 4500sq m of the site, the agents said.
Two years ago, Lamb was bullish about the site’s potential: “The $500m plans could see a further 80,000sq m of commercial space added.”
Some parts of the site can take a 13-level block, he said then.
“The next two buildings will be commercial. We have resource consent for one but that’s going to be tenant-led because 2020 has been a pretty tough year and we’re going to have to take into account where the market is,” Lamb said in 2020.
To complete the 22,000sq m hotel/car parking/shop/office building 1, Infratil reconfigured NZ Bus’ use of the Halsey St end of the site.
So 16 workshops were reduced to eight and 70 car parks have been leased for NZ Bus staff to park their private vehicles, taking up less space on the site, Lamb said.
Non-urgent bus servicing was now done at the Swanson depot, he said.
Lamb has been working in the Wynyard Quarter for more than 20 years, having previously been with the formerly listed Trans Tasman Properties, then the listed Goodman Property Trust.
At Trans Tasman, he was development manager for the Air New Zealand’s headquarters on Fanshawe St.
When NZ Bus moves into new offices in building 1, Lamb said Infratil could then demolish its existing headquarters and examine development propositions for that site.
Cooper and Company is managing the new car park.
The Herald reported last month on another unsold property expected to go for around $200m or more.
Central Park in the Greenlane/Ellerslie area has offices for more than 2000 people spread across its 4.8ha 11-building $200 million-plus campus-style site, car parks often outside office front doors, near a train station and motorway access.
Marketing describes it as a “super-sized business park”.
But super-sized interest rates and borrowing costs, difficulty getting access to capital, the pandemic, delays engaging consultants and shut borders are just some of the reasons cited for such a big asset not selling, those close to the deal say.
“If it had been two years ago, it would be gone by now,” said one consultant who specialises in top-end sales like this.
James Molloy, transactions and syndicate sales manager at Oyster Group, which owns Central Park with a partner, did not return calls about the sale. Nor did Oyster’s Mark Schiele.