Tom Rowland is a Hamilton News reporter.

Duplex future for city living

The new two-storey duplex houses in Rototuna will look to encourage community living. (Inset) Lodge Real Estate agent Cathy O'Shea. Photos / Supplied
The new two-storey duplex houses in Rototuna will look to encourage community living. (Inset) Lodge Real Estate agent Cathy O'Shea. Photos / Supplied

A group of 15 modern townhouses on a new street in Rototuna is heralding what is likely to be the future of suburban communities in Hamilton.

As soon as you arrive at Springside Court you notice a difference in the houses along the quiet cul-de-sac.

Each pair of houses is connected by garages, the driveways are shared in pairs but each owner has a full freehold title to their property.

 Lodge Real Estate agent Cathy O'Shea. Photo/ Supplied
Lodge Real Estate agent Cathy O'Shea. Photo/ Supplied

Looking to be the catalyst for this new wave of community living is new resident to the street, Jenny Cameron, an ex-Aucklander who moved down to Hamilton to be closer to family.

"My thought is, I'm already here, I'm already moved in, so when the next one moves I'm going to take them a batch of muffins, give them my name and phone and do this to each of them, and get the other neighbours' names as well just so everyone knows each other," Ms Cameron said.

"It's quite big for something that is quite compact," said first resident Jenny Cameron.
Photo / Supplied
"It's quite big for something that is quite compact," said first resident Jenny Cameron. Photo / Supplied

Ms Cameron has become the 'queen' of the street and wants to build on that role to help establish the community of Springside Court.

"I think I've got a role to play in whether this becomes a community or not, by introducing the neighbours to each other and inviting them to coffee or a glass of wine."

"I'm quite determined to make this work."

Springside Court was built and developed by Hamilton Master Builders Da-Silva Builders Ltd and designed by Rototuna-based firm Byrne+Enright Architects.

The townhouses are on the market at $650,000 and are seen as the next step up on the property ladder for some home buyers.

Mayor Andrew King who officially opened the development, said that when more properties like Springside Court are developed, the more houses for first home buyers will be made available further down the market.

"The more of these [properties] that go in, the more people who move out of areas like Nawton, and that releases those houses which are on half sections with a carport. They're for your first home buyer and you buy those for about $350,000 and up," said King.

"That's the way it all works and everyone cascades up through the system in to your million-dollar houses or your $900,000 houses. People just move up and it makes those houses at the bottom of the market available."

According to a recent council report, Hamilton's average house value sits at $539,357, allowing for a possible avenue for home owners looking to move up the property ladder.

Lodge Real Estate's Cathy O'Shea, who oversees the sale of Springside, said that not just houses have been created, but an affordable community to live in.

"The shortage of affordable housing is such a huge issue for the city and I am very pleased that we have consensus from all parties in council and government that it is a priority," Ms O'Shea said.

Currently the Hamilton City Council is working on a new set of rules that will allow the creation of special housing areas, and submissions from the public on the matter have recently closed.

- Hamilton News

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