Project Description

Bupa Retirement Village, Wellington Turfrey Plumbing

Construction of a three-storey, 50-apartment retirement home in Upper Hutt is finally under way in which the Turfrey Wellington team are carrying out the Plumbing and Drainage works.

Bupa New Zealand’s plans for the $24 million development on the corner of Fergusson Dr and Ward St in Wallaceville were made public 10 months ago and the site, a long-vacant petrol station, cleared in the following months.

Maycroft Construction began groundwork in January on the project, which is set to take two years.

The development, granted resource consent by Upper Hutt City Council, exceeds an eight-metre height limit and boundary setback maximums in the District Plan.

“The addition of a third storey will introduce a new element of scale not currently present within the existing environment,” city planning director Richard Harbord said.

Mitigating factors, including nearby buildings with boundary encroachments, and the variation in cladding materials, building design and landscaping, ensure it will, “while altering the character of the area, still integrate with the surrounding environment in a positive way”.

The site’s Business Commercial zoning lent itself to larger-scale building, Harbord said.

“The village will have a mix of one and two-bedroom apartments, 50 in total,” Bupa project manager Graham Haslemore said.

The first stage of 20 apartments and a community centre will be finished in early 2019. “The remaining 30 apartments will be completed later that year.”

The development borders Bupa’s existing two-storey apartment complex in Ward St and its care home in Fergusson Dr.

The high-traffic intersection was the site of the Quinns Post Hotel, which operated in various incarnations for several decades before it was demolished and replaced by the petrol station in 1998.

The planning approval noted the development would add to Upper Hutt’s housing stock.

“Although targeted at a specific age group it is still considered to provide additional supply for elderly, who are still independent but require close community living, with access to care facilities.”

Its design “makes a positive contribution to both the streetscape and local character of the area on what is a prominent site in the city”.