34 Edwin Street
Woodhams Meikle Zhan
There’s plenty to like about the location of The Ed. The low-rise mix of rented apartments and Quest hotel rooms on Edwin St, Mt Eden, is within the sought-after Auckland Grammar zone and in easy walking distance of the revamped local City Rail Link station. As a development site, however, it was far from easy. In fact, despite the location’s obvious appeal, many developers put it in the too-hard basket. Historically a timber treatment yard, it languished as a carpark for years as the industrial area around it was transformed into a neighbourhood of office and residential apartment buildings, an unwieldy site with tricky angles at the boundaries, shallow rock below ground and low-level contamination. Eventually, Resident Properties, a Build to Rent (BTR) property fund managed by a joint venture of Haydn & Rollett and Reidy & Co, gave it a crack.
Completed two months ahead of schedule in June 2021, the resulting property is testament to a professionally managed project in which every potential headache was methodically tackled. Access via a shared driveway and the inevitable noise, dust and vibration that comes when you have to pile through shallow rock could have spelled difficult relations with the neighbours.
To mitigate that, the project managers maintained regular communication, sending out a weekly newsletter detailing what to expect and when access might be restricted. During piling, a curtain shrouded the rig to contain the worst of the dust, and old fill was trucked to a managed quarry for appropriate handling. Air and noise monitoring were conducted throughout, while routine surveying helped to ensure that protected view shafts of Mt Eden’s volcanic cone weren’t compromised.
The building includes 52 Quest hotel rooms on levels one and two, and 36 apartments with views on levels three and four. Due to the rented/guest nature of The Ed, the materials selected are all durable and simple to maintain, including stone composite flooring and easily replaced carpet tiles. In the same vein, the apartments have been set up to make it painless to move in, with all whiteware included, and services such as electricty managed by the landlord. There’s a common lounge for renters with shared workspaces; electronic storage lockers and parcel delivery lockers; charging for electric vehicles; bike storage; and phone app-enabled door entry for keyless entry. The onetime ugly duckling of a site has officially become a covetable urban address.