NZ Urban Development news from the media | 14 April | Govt to fund temporary cycleways and footpaths post COVID-19 lockdown


Hi *|FNAME|*, Please find below Urban Development News from the media from the week of 14 April 2020.

Provided by Rockhopper Development Advisory, a member of:                             

Govt to fund temporary cycleways and footpaths post COVID-19 lockdown

The Government will provide extra funding to help councils expand footpaths and roll out temporary cycleways to help people keep 2 metres of physical distance after the Alert Level 4 lockdown, Associate Minister of Transport Julie Anne Genter announced today.

“When people begin to return to city centres following the lockdown we want them to have enough space to maintain physical distance,” said Julie Anne Genter.

“Some of our footpaths in busy areas are quite narrow. Temporary footpath extensions mean people can give each other a bit more space without stepping out onto the road.”

Funding will come from the Innovating Streets for People pilot fund, part of a wider programme that supports projects using ‘tactical urbanism’ techniques such as pilots and pop-up, interim treatments that make it safer and easier for people walking and cycling in the city.

Kiwi Property cancels $55 million of dividends to shareholders and cuts executive pay

Kiwi Property, one of the country's big shopping centres owners, has cancelled dividends to its shareholders worth $55.3 million to preserve its cash.

Kiwi Property said with the inherent uncertainty surrounding the length of Covid-19's disruption, the company's board decided it need to be prudent with its capital and would not go ahead with the final dividend for the year ended 31 March 2020.

The board of directors, chief executive and executive team had agreed to a 20 percent reduction in pay, while in parallel, employee salary increases had also been frozen.

COVID-19: Rent increase freeze and more protection for tenants

  • Immediate freeze on rent increases
  • Tenancies will not be terminated during the lock-down period, unless the parties agree, or in limited circumstances
  • Tenants who had previously given notice can stay in their if they need to stay in the tenancy during the lock-down period
  • Tenants will still be able to terminate their tenancy as normal, if they wish

The Government is supporting New Zealanders to stay in their rental properties with a six month freeze on residential rent increases and increased protection from having their tenancies terminated, says the Housing Minister Dr Megan Woods.

“These changes will ensure that people can stay in their homes during this challenging time. This enables families and individuals to self-isolate, to stay home and maintain physical distancing, supporting the public health of all New Zealanders.

Huge deal to buy retirement village operator Metlifecare likely to terminate because of Covid-19

The $1.49 billion takeover of one of New Zealand's large retirement village operators Metlifecare by a Swedish investor is likely to be terminated because of Covid-19.

Metlifecare has been told by the Swedish fund manager EQT that it is likely to terminate the takeover of the company because of the impact of Covid-19 on the retirement village business and its value and because Metlifecare did not consult with it or get its consent to decisions made in relation to the Government lockdown. 

Metlifecare said it would be taking legal advice on that. It owns and operates 25 villages in the North Island, home to 5600 residents.

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