The news of Marutuahu - Ockham residential securing the tender for the 3 guys site is an exciting announcement and one that is long overdue for Avondale.
You can read the herald announcement here
What makes this announcement exciting is not only has Eke Panuku found a development partner to take on this massive project, but that that development partner is an Iwi collective together with in my opinion, the best residential developer in Auckland.
The site of the old 3 guys supermarket is a reminder of what happens when private organizations and council bodies can't work together. In the end, its the community that suffers. For over 20 years Avondale mainstreet has been cut in half by the demotliton of the 3 guys shopping centre. Where once the mainstreet was thriving and connected, the 3 guys contruction site resulted in an area darkened by the lack of lighting, activity and now a mainstreet without continuity. Over the years it has been a dumping ground and sometimes a carpark. An area where local would frequent at night to drink or learn to drive. But whilst it has been an eyesore - we haven't been one to sit around complaining.
Despite the failures of our Counicil at the time, Avondale has made the most of this construction site, Avondale's creativity and resourcefulness coming through with the creation of the Avondale art park - a place where graffiti artist from all over NZ come to paint. Where murals are constantly changing, each one highlighting the artists sentiments and reflections of the day. The 3 guys site is also home to the Pavilion, recently created by Dr. Bobby Hung (aka Berst1) mixing architecture and graffiti art.
The site has hosted numerous community events here, from Christmas parties to community dinners, festivals, the circus and more. The ground has seen collaboration between various community groups over the years and has also led to some disagreements - this is all part of what makes the Avondale community thrive.
And whilst the past 20 years has meant we have had to make do with a construction site in the middle of our town centre, its 'undesirability' to developers has meant the site has been largely untouched, some big plans were made years ago but fell through - what was a vacant eyesore now becomes a unique and bold opportunity for the Marutuahu - Ockham group.
With such a large land parcel to work with and with the support of governing bodies and the community at large - the chance to really create the heart of Avondale, one that is well designed, creative, environmentally, culturally and socially responsive is here.
Having Marutuahu - Ockham play a major role in shaping our mainstreet is a major win for our local business community and for the whole of Avondale and we're looking forward to working together to help Ockham create their best project yet.
Avondale Business Association