South Auckland state house residents to be moved as major new development announced - 'I feel sad'

A massive new housing project in South Auckland unveiled by the government today will see 10,000 new houses built in the next ten to 15 years – but current residents are sad to see their homes go.

The project will see 3000 state houses and 3500 affordable KiwiBuild houses built for first homebuyers in Māngere.

Another 3500 houses will be sold on the private market.

Housing Minister Phil Twyford says the government will "replace 2700 old state houses with 10,000 new modern, warn dry homes".

"We're not expecting to inject a whole lot of extra capital into it. We're redeveloping a publicly-owned land, investing as we go [and] reinvesting that capital into the building of new homes," Mr Twyford said.

While the cost of the new private homes is unknown, the housing minister expects the KiwiBuild homes to sell for no more than $650,000.

However, Mary Fiefia, who's lived in her Māngere state home for 16 years, is sad to see it go.

"I feel sad because we have to, like, leave our old house," Ms Fiefia said.

Lemauga Lydia Sosene, who works for the Māngere-Ōtāhuhu community board, asks, "If we want our communities to remain, who is going to pay the difference for our families to remain?"

The government is currently working on a shared equity scheme to allow for families to remain in the area.

"Reducing the upfront costs, a homebuyer has to take on the payments and the deposits and the size of the mortgage over time. You pay that off and eventually, you can buy out that equity share," Mr Twyford said.

Housing New Zealand is promising to find accommodation for families who have been forced out of state properties to make way for the new development.

The government agency says it will cover costs and provide help for the families' relocation.

"When you've got growing families, you need the stability - a house provides that stability. It provides the family and extended family a base they can come to," Ms Sosene said.

The KiwiBuild homes in Māngere are needed, but for residents like Mary Fiefia, it means temporary relocation. Source: 1 NEWS



Northbound lane on SH1 north of Wellington reopens but major delays expected after truck and two cars crash

The northbound lane on State Highway 1 in the Kāpiti Coast has been reopened after several people were injured following a collision between a truck and two cars today.

The incident occurred on the northbound lane between Pukerua Bay and Paekākāriki at 4.10pm.

The northbound lane has been reopened but severe congestion remains.

The southbound lane has been diverted to Paekākāriki Hill Road, which is unsuitable for trucks and heavy vehicles.

Motorists have been advised to avoid the area following the incident as lengthy delays are expected.

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Dogs on the loose threat to kiwi population in Hawke's Bay park

Hawke’s Bay's largest kiwi population may be at risk from two dogs that are loose in the Kaweka Forest Park according to the Department of Conservation.

The dogs entered the forest park on Sunday July 1 with their owner, where they escaped from Little's Clearing car park and have not been seen since.

DOC Ahuriri-Napier ranger Rod Hansen says he is extremely concerned for the welfare of the kiwi, as these dogs have not been trained to avoid birds.

"Only avian avoidance trained, permitted dogs are allowed in the park and they must be under the control of their owner at all times.

Two dogs loose in Hawke's Bay park. Source: DOC

"This means that the park's kiwi are at even greater risk than they would be otherwise from a free roaming dog," Mr Hansen says.

The dogs have been roaming the forest park for almost two weeks now which means they could have covered considerable ground.

DOC Napier-Auhuriri Acting Operations Manager Moana Smith-Dunlop says dogs not under control can kill kiwi really easily.

Kiwi (file picture).
Kiwi (file picture). Source: 1 NEWS

"These birds are very fragile, it doesn't take much of a bite or a dog mouthing them, to kill them. That is why people must be mindful that if they do take a permitted dog into the Kaweka Forest park they are entering kiwi territory," Ms MSith-Dunlop says.

DOC is now working with the owner to recover these animals urgently.

DOC also asks that any sightings of the dogs be reported by phoning 0800 DOC-HOT.

Two dogs loose in Hawke's Bay park. Source: DOC