Screen precinct earmarked for Hobsonville Point

Published: 20 July 2015
Filed under: Screen Auckland, Screen industry news

Auckland Council’s Auckland Development Committee has today passed a recommendation to create a screen precinct on council-owned land at Hobsonville Point.

At the same time, the committee agreed that council will no longer proceed with a marine industry precinct on the 20 hectare site, a legacy project adopted by Auckland Council from the former Waitakere Council in 2010.

The committee today weighed up two options. The first, recommended by Auckland Council Property Limited (ACPL), would see 14 hectares of land committed to residential development, with the remaining 6 hectares earmarked for an Employment Hub.

The second, passed by the committee, is a proposal by Auckland Tourism, Events and Economic Development Limited (ATEED) to allow a procurement process for private investors to build and operate a screen precinct on 10 hectares of the land, with the remaining 10 hectares to become residential development.

ATEED now has until 31 October to complete the procurement process for the film studio campus and will report back to the Auckland Development Committee at its November meeting. In the event that a commercially viable proposal for developing the screen precinct hasn’t been secured by then, ACPL’s proposal will be adopted by council.

Deputy Mayor Penny Hulse says council has worked with the marine industry on the precinct project over the past 10 years to make it a success, however it has not been able to secure any superyacht proposals and the land is now available for other development opportunities.

“Now is the time to be practical and if a marine precinct cannot provide employment, then other options need to be considered that provide the best outcomes for both the local area and the wider region in terms of homes and jobs”.

ATEED Chief Executive Brett O’Riley says ATEED is pleased with the councillors’ support for the screen precinct proposal and the opportunity to follow up on the high level of interest from private sector investors – including major international studios – to build and operate a precinct at Hobsonville Point.

“The hard work starts now as the Auckland Investment Office and ATEED go back to potential investors with a concrete proposal in place and firm up a deal by the end of October deadline. It’s good to have a tight timeframe in place which will deliver certainty for everyone,” he says.

Mr O’Riley added that Auckland has a valuable and highly regarded screen and digital sector, but ATEED believes it could be much better.

“ATEED’s vision is for the private sector to create a thriving modern, world-class, price-competitive, studio complex with adjacent film schools and associated commerce.

“That will allow Auckland to attract the major international productions we are missing out on, allow the domestic industry to continue to grow, and provide more than 400 high-value jobs long term in the Hobsonville area,” he says.

ACPL Chief Executive David Rankin says he appreciates council’s wish to see where ATEED’s proposal for a film facility might lead and to provide another three months to explore that potential.

“In the interim three months ACPL will continue to complete the consenting for roading infrastructure and associated design so momentum is maintained in the event council adopts the 14 hectare/6 hectare mixed development proposal later in the year,” he says.

For further information, please contact:
Katherine Forbes, Senior Media Advisor, Auckland Council
Ph: 021 872 680
katherine.forbes@aucklandcouncil.govt.nz