You are not permitted to download, save or email this image. Visit image gallery to purchase the image.
So he was pleased to announce yesterday the council was putting the Matai Ridge subdivision back on the market, looking to fill a substantial gap in the town’s housing and land markets.
It is a re-start for the project which was shelved three years ago.
The council and southern construction company Wilson Contractors (2003) Ltd have entered into a joint venture which will lead to 35 sections developed on the East Gore site.
The first 15 sections are being released tomorrow by First National Gore.
Mr Hicks said it was good news for the district.
"It has been a long time coming," he said.
"We just had to get it over the line and provide some welcome relief to people looking to buy sections to build in Gore.
"Almost daily I would be asked, especially those involved in property, what is going to be done in the property market, how can we help those who want to come to Gore and live here.
"Then you talk to the large employers — they have people who want to move down here but can’t find a place to live."
The council bought the 3.6ha of land in March 2017 for $360,000. It was formerly owned by United States retired dentist and developer Dr Jack Phillips.
The council put the project on hold in 2018.
It had sold just one section at the time.
The time was right now for it to come back on to the market, Mr Hicks said.
First National Gore directors Graham and Tara Maxwell said the sections would range in value, being listed from $149,000.
Mr Maxwell said the town had been waiting for a purpose-built subdivision to come on the market.
"The timing is right.
"We have got people wanting to get in and buy a section.
"It is hard to get housing in Gore and find a section which will have services," he said.
He said that in 2018 the market had been more subdued with an average price of a house between $220,000-$230,000, but it had now moved closer to $400,000.
Mrs Maxwell said there would be various prices for the different sections.
The council’s contribution to the project to date is $1.15million.
Council chief executive Stephen Parry said Wilson Contractors had been a keen tenderer throughout the history of the subdivision.
"We bring to the table the market value of the land, detailed engineering designs, resource consent and marketing among other things."
Under the joint venture, revenue would be shared in proportion to the financial contribution of each party, Mr Parry said.