News emerged the other day about the Manukau Golf Club moving to a new location with  their existing site having been sold to Fletchers who plan to turn it into housing.

More than 700 members of one of Auckland’s best-known golf clubs are upping sticks and moving south.

The Manukau Golf Club, off Great South Rd near the Southern Motorway at Manurewa, is shifting 8km away to Alfriston-Ardmore Rd near Ardmore Airport, after more than 80 per cent of members voted to leave their 45ha site.

Fletcher Residential is understood to be paying more than $40 million for the site, which could take 500 to 800 houses and is already zoned residential.

Here is the area being talked about.

Manukau Golf Club

But it is perhaps the last line of the article that has got a few people annoyed.

Conifer Grove Residents Association chairman Jan van Wijk said people had enjoyed beautiful views across the greens for many years but this would all change once Fletcher moved in. Homeowners on Keywella Drive, Chippewa Place and Aristoy Close would be worst affected and concerns had been raised about traffic and congestion once the new places were built.

“I don’t think everyone is thrilled about it but we can’t object to it. If it comes up for consultation, we’ll certainly make some noises, asking for decent quality housing,”

Mr van Wijk understood a 600- residence low-density development was planned.

It is fairly widely acknowledged that Auckland will need to increase its density to help with accommodating the expected population growth over the next 30 years. The Auckland plan has a focus on on getting 60-70% of all dwellings built in the next 30 years within the existing urban limits. As such I have seen a few comments from people saying that we should be putting medium to high density dwellings in here but I think that ignores a few realities. The first is that the council seems to have realised that one of the key things to making density more attractive to people is that a location needs to have good amenity, particularly in the form of a local centre and good transport links. Unless the council and/or Fletchers decide to put a town centre in here (which isn’t necessarily a bad idea) then there is unlikely to be the needed amenity to really support higher density.

The issue of transport links raises another interesting debate. The North Eastern corner is semi close to the existing Te Mahia however according to the RPTP that is set to close. Even it if were to stay open, which I don’t necessarily agree with for a number of reasons, only the closest of the houses would be within walking distance while the vast majority would still need to use other methods if they wanted to catch a train. That means for public transport, buses feeding into Manurewa are likely to be key so any development whether it includes a town centre or not really needs to take that into account. One big opportunity with the development is that it could enable much better connectivity from places like the nearby Conifer grove. Currently that area has only one access point which happens to be a motorway over bridge so one bad bridge strike by a truck could cut off the neighbourhood for days. This development provides the potential to solve that problem while at the same time potentially providing more feasible bus route and a quick look at the roads suggests that Brylee Dr was designed from the start with this in mind.

One last comment on the issue of density. A quick calculation shows that the density in Auckland as a whole is roughly 2400 per square km while the average house size is 3 people per dwelling. With those figures in mind and the minimum number of potential dwellings being 500, the density of this development would be around 3300 people per square km so while it has been described as low density development, it is not likely to be quite as low density as Auckland is used to. That could change further as it is likely the unitary plan that the council is currently working on will be in place by the time construction kicks off and the new rules will hopefuly dramatically change things like minimum lot sizes and setbacks which would allow for more dwellings.

Personally I think a mix of terraced houses and traditional standalone houses are what is needed here but really we will need to wait to see what plans Fletchers produce (Fletchers feel free to get in touch with me if you want to share your plans). One thing I would almost bet on is that we will see a whole heap of roads in this development with golf themed names.

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  1. Our house is in that photo, so we certainly know the area well.

    I question where the access roads would be. Brylee, Keywella and Great South would all be logical to me. The area does not need additional shops as Southmall is local and struggling, while Takanini is local and booming (even The Warehouse have announced they are moving there from Papakura).

  2. The Council will have to do a bit of work on Great South Road in this location. It is extremely poor in this location, with 4 lanes, a wide median, no cycling facilities and no footpaths on the West side. Very much a road though a light industrial area, not a residential area. Interesting debate about whether the council or developer should pay for this. Another issue is that will the council allow three large intersections in tis 400m section of Great South Road, or will they make them have the main access off Holmes Road.

    Schooling will be interesting as well. Clayton Park is just past the west end of the development, however is Decile 4. Meanwhile Conifer Grove school is at least 1km to the south however is Decile 7. Will everyone end up driving to drop there kids off at Conifer Grove, or let them walk to a poorer school close by?

  3. The area of current housing on the south east side is currently rather isolated, bounded by the golf course and the motorway and motorway junction. They need to drive (or bicycle or whatever) anything up to 750m south in order to cross the motorway, then another 500m to join Great South Rd. They’ll end up with much better local connectivity with a much shorter route to Great South Rd. I’d argue that the area along Great South Rd and adjacent to the motorway junction would be better developed as light industrial.

  4. Im told brylee will be pedestrian/ cycle access only into the new development in order to prevent it being a rat run. the secondary access will be via the longer less direct keywella road. I’m not sure how the Holmes access could work. they would have to bridge a stream through a reserve and build another set of lights at Holmes/mahia. sounds really expensive, let alone getting approval to acquire that reserve land.

  5. Funny. We have friends living on a hill bordering the course, and because the very bottom of the section is level with the golf course, they can’t add a lower level onto their pole house due to the “flooding risk” from the creek. So I have to wonder how Fletchers have mitigated that risk for the entire golf course.

    Sounds to me like the developer should pay for roading changes. After all, they’re supposed to “mitigate local traffic effects”

    1. ” So I have to wonder how Fletchers have mitigated that risk for the entire golf course.”

      You’d hope that some rather decent flood modelling and subsequent stormwater plans will be required (and usually are).

      “Sounds to me like the developer should pay for roading changes. After all, they’re supposed to “mitigate local traffic effects””

      They are required to do that. The question is more whether the results will be more of the usual (read: blow up some intersections to twice their size to “retain existing traffic speeds”) or whether someone will actually think about how a new suburb can be served by more than just cars.

  6. Roger, I’m working on a similar project right now. The answer is reroute the creek (with all the associated environmental protections/mitigations in place) so it ends up lower.

  7. the developer would be paying for a new set of lights onto GSR because they would have an impact. but AT would be hard pressed to get them to build a bridge to Holmes.

    Also, Obi I think as part of this development they are proposing commercial development along GSR in the future.

    1. well our daughters school is decile 3 and is a wonderful school with a waiting list for out of zone enrolments – decile is not necessarily a reflection of a good school ………though of the schools mentioned here I will concede the higher decile one does have the better word of mouth reputation with parents ……….but I am not sure if that’s a reflection of decile perception or not.

    1. Sorry – that comment should have been posted to the blog post “North Shore Rail and the Harbour Crossing” – I’ll repost there. Matt or someone please delete my comments here? 🙂

  8. Not really relevant to PT but is there plans to upgrade the motorway onramp so that vehicles do not need to merge on the two-laned bridge?

    1. ouch that would be an expensive project. Guess the northbound GS Road onramp could have its own bridge over the rail line, maybe could avoid loop back south and just head north of southbound GS lane. Anyway its all madness and is just a big argument for PT spending.

    2. There are plans but its probably 10 years away. I don’t know how much difference it will make. more parking space for traffic heading onto the motorway.

  9. I read on another post on here that plans are afoot to close the Te Mahia station which would be 5 minutes walk from here.Only in Auckland!

    1. It would be a 5 minute walk for perhaps a dozen of 500-800 dwellings planned to go in here. the majority would be more like 1.5km+. Also have you been to the Te Mahia station, it is one of the worst on the entire network and so bad that even those within walking distance are unlikely to use it.

  10. What can I say?I forgot that no-one walks anywhere nowdays.That motorway entry is one of the scariest about already(north bound)without this development.I had a good think about Te Mahia station and can claim to have used it but not since 1972!L.O.L.

  11. We currently live in Conifer Grove and would be horrified if the new subdivision opened up onto Holmes Rd. We choose Conifer because of it’s safety eg one road in, one road out with Security Cameras, a good school and a safe neighborhood. Opening the area up to a “poorer area” of Manurewa would probably see an increase in crime and a lower decile rating at the school which would have to expand if it is to carry the extra students, as it is the school roll is 450+

  12. The golf course has been there since 1932 and is home to a number of native birds not to mention migrating birds that arrive every november for about three months. A huge housing development would destroy this!! The area should be a green belt not sold for profit to line the pockets of corporate criminals.
    We do not need this development on one of the worst motorway onramps in NZ. The great south road is congested now and can take 20 minutes to get from Walter Strevens drive up to Mahia Road. It is about time that our Mayor stood up and did something instead of focusing on every other area apart from where he comes from. It has been said that we have enough parks in Sth Auckland, one can never have enough green belt areas, once they have been built on they are gone forever. If Fletchers wants to develop more areas for housing then why arent they building on the land that is proposed for the new course, is it because it is on a flood plane?.Everyone who borders on to the golf course needs to be heard and stop this development, it is not to late!!
    Sandra Byrnes

  13. Interesting to note the Governments just released funding plans that cover the widening of the Southern Motorway now include redevelopment of some of the Takanini interchange next to this proposed development…wonder if fletchers could tie some of the changes they want to make to prep for the development into that work ? Would minimise disruption I guess.
    Also I think Te Mahia station with a few improvements could really serve the new inhabitants of this area well – it may need some thinking to get the best usability and improved Great South access but (having walked that area) I know its not a long walk from that station to the golf course area ……you would need good traffic control etc for pedestrians though. Also since the Southmall park and ride is already beyond full if they could find a place for decent parking at Te Mahia there they would boost usage greatly. Never used Te Mahia station myself but I wish those trying all the best in saving it.

  14. Though they could modify the existing Wattle Downs bus and feed people from that and the new development into that station too …….and def cycling provisions would be ideal
    its not a particularly ideal road set-up for cyclists or pedestrians and it appears a number of intermediate school kids from Takanini have to transverse that area (or use the Te Mahia station) to get to Greenmeadows ……so it would be good in the off/on ramp work and the golf course development to see provisions for that too. Probably would assume some of the kids in the golf course development would attend Greenmeadows as well …………

  15. sorry i havent read all the above comments so the answer I am looking into might be in there but will there be some sort of bridge to connect the new development with Wattle Downs? – this could be handy so its easier to access Connifer Grove via cycling rather than riding up Mahia Road which can be busy and dangerous.

    1. I live in Wattle Downs and have heard no talk about a bridge to Conifer Grove. The only possibility I can see is a bridge across the stream and through YKK spare land to Holmes Road. This land was for sale recently and is unused.

      Here is the first ad for the subdivision I have seen. . Completion date approx end 2016.

      Anyone reading the Manukau Courier will know there is infighting between the two factions of the Manurewa Local Board re the Mahia train station. Motorway widening has just started here and will presumably involve the northbound onramp.

      Another issue is whether traffic lights will be installed in Great South Road, vaguely where the current golf course entrance is.

      1. i have got the plans for the new subdivision and it shows one of the road facing across the mahia stream where the boat place is in holmes road but it states that it could build a bridge there.i live in keywella drive down the end of the road.

      1. hi owen .could you send me your email and i will send you the plans with all the working details .cheers max

  16. Would like to know size of house and land. How close houses will be built. And would like to see the plan & pricing for house & land package. Would there be a chance to modify or request any changes in the initial house plan. When will it start to built and what time frame will it be completed by.

  17. Hey Ranita, get yourself down there, they have sone show homes up and sales people who can answer all your questions. There’s a mix of terraced, duplex, and detached so far. Had a look round there a week ago, quite tidy to be fair.

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