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NZ Huge industrial facility fills gap

Property Here - Saturday, September 14, 2013

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Appearance on the market of big, modern property in the East Tamaki hub offers a rare opportunity for a potential buyer, writes Colin Taylor
The 14,000sq m facility in Ron Driver Place includes two warehouses, one of which is pictured above.
The 14,000sq m facility in Ron Driver Place includes two warehouses, one of which is pictured above.

A "massive" 14,000sq m manufacturing and warehousing facility with A-grade office accommodation in the industrial hub of East Tamaki has been put on the market on behalf of the owner, Direct Property Fund.

Andrew Hooper, Greg Goldfinch and Paul Higgins of Colliers International are offering the 18 Ron Driver Place site for sale by deadline private treaty closing at 4pm on October 10.

Hooper says demand for industrial property in East Tamaki and a scarcity of buildings for sale of this size in the area make this a rare opportunity for a potential buyer.

"It's very unusual to find such a large, modern industrial property available in East Tamaki," he says.

"The office space is absolutely top notch and it also provides modern, high-quality warehousing or factory space. Owing to its size and convenient location, the property would suit a variety of industrial users.

"It could be used as a distribution centre, warehouse or manufacturing space and could possibly be divided to suit more than one occupier."

He says the owner will also offer the property for lease, providing extra flexibility for occupiers who may want to consider renting instead of owning the facility.

The property, which previously housed a manufacturing business, is spread over a 2ha site on two titles.

Higgins says it is offered part leased and part vacant, with Lion Nathan occupying half the warehouse on a lease expiring in October 2015.

"This gives an incoming owner-occupier the ability to expand in a couple of years' time, with part of the property providing a cash flow return until then," he says.

Built in two stages between 1991 and 2000, the site holds two warehouses and a two-level office, staff amenity and showroom area.

The first warehouse has a 5083sq m floor area with a 506sq m extension featuring gantry rails for two 16-tonne gantry cranes. The second warehouse is 5273sq m.

Goldfinch says very high-quality offices, meeting and entertaining areas are one of the property's main assets. "The office areas are spread over two levels and feature board rooms, a central atrium, a bar, staff cafeteria and landscaped outdoor paved courtyard."

Other facilities include garaging, a hardware store and canopy areas, with roller doors and drive-around access for ease of delivery and transport.

The property lies within the Auckland Council's Business 5 (Mixed) zone, which applies to mixed areas of light and medium industry, offices and a limited range of retailing activity.

Hooper says the retailing component allows businesses to sell certain goods made on-site, provided the floor area used for retail sales does not exceed size requirements.

"The zoning recognises that, with the increasing use of better technology and management practices, the effects of industrial and manufacturing activities are compatible with retailing and other activities."

Permitted activities within the zone include industry, offices, bars and cafes and warehousing.

The property has three separate vehicle entrances off two roads: Greenmount Drive and Ron Driver Place - which is connected via Nandina Ave to Harris Rd, a major north-south arterial route.

Higgins says the property is in the heart of one of Auckland's fastest-growing industrial areas, among top-tier occupiers including Fisher & Paykel, OfficeMax, Steel & Tube and Carter Holt Harvey.

He says East Tamaki is now well-known as one of Auckland's most popular industrial precincts and as the home of many "big sheds" housing large-scale companies.

"East Tamaki has seen a substantial volume of new development over the years and has now firmly established itself as a high-quality and well-recognised industrial address. As a consequence, in recent years there has been a strong shift in focus with occupiers and investors placing greater emphasis on the area.

"East Tamaki is now a very tightly held market for owner-occupiers and investors alike, with quality properties having become hard to come by."

Higgins says the recent leasing of the former Panasonic HQ and warehouse to Andrew Symes Motors further exacerbates the supply side constraints in this location.

He says East Tamaki is also conveniently located for access to and from the surrounding suburbs including Botany, Pakuranga and Otara, which provide a stable supply of blue- and white-collar workers. Botany Downs Town Centre is only a short drive away, providing further staff amenities such as shopping and cafes.