Welhaus has also enjoyed the support and encouragement of Hon Jo Goodhew, Associate Minister for Primary Industries, Ministry for Primary Industries (MPI), New Zealand Trade and Enterprise (NZTE), and regional development agencies including the Canterbury Employers Chambers of Commerce (CECC), Collaborate Canterbury, and Canterbury Development Corporation (CDC)
The Welhaus Team
The team comprises Dan Tremewan Development Director, James Cameron Construction Director, Management Accountant Alistair Sheard, Manufacturing Design and Development Consultant Johann Betz; Design & Architectural Consultant Simon Blencowe; Structural Engineering Consultant Julian Addington; Geotechnical Engineering Consultant Matt Wiley; Quantity Surveyor Davies Ogilvie; Surveying Consultants Envivo (Residential) & Woods (Commercial); Production Manager Ingo True; Construction Supervisor Dan Fong and Assembly & Construction crews.
Welhaus has established a boutique off-site manufacturing (OSM) facility with a capacity for producing 9,000m2 of engineered timber framed Welpanels (NB: Welhaus building product name, to be trademarked). It is envisaged that additional equipment will be ordered in 2016 to automate and further improve productivity of our existing factory, in Woolston Christchurch.
Welhaus projects to date have been the production of housing modules that are capable of being configured into multi-family, multi-level residential homes. More recently, Welhaus is nearing completion of work on its first commercial building, facing west toward the Tannery Boutique Shopping Complex.
Our capacity to produce and manufacture is currently expanding, on the basis of strong demand and recent awards. We are set to start on a major plant construction project (encompassing dedicated factory, warehouse and storage space) in Christchurch, shortly. The Welhaus product range is also expanding: Welhaus has added studio and bathroom modules to our design mix, with a view to expanding into the hospitality, social and emergency housing services sectors. We are also scoping partnerships with and delivery to clients in the retail, office, education and corrections sectors.
Currently 112 Bamford St, Woolston with planned move to new, purpose-built Head Office (including factory and storage plant) at 96 Marshall St, Woolston.
Uniqueness of product
Welhaus, through its Welbuild (and Welpanel) system, aims to transform the face of the New Zealand building industry – bringing efficiencies and technologies enjoyed until now only in Europe, a centre of high-tech housing manufacture.
The efficiency increases that have transformed the production of nearly every other product of the last century have had no corollary in the New Zealand design and construction industry. Industrialising the process of building and construction is by no means widespread, globally, and it is even rarer to witness the industrialisation of a hybrid performance housing system in New Zealand (where the bulk of construction work remains a highly labour-intensive, onsite process using traditional and inefficient methods).
In contrast, our unique hybrid approach to panelisation (the use of our branded ‘Welpanel’ walls, and Cross Laminated or CLT floors) allows for improved cost-efficiency in residential housing, both in terms of construction timeframes and weather tightness, and also affordability (basic building costs).
Innovations of which we are proud:
The Welhaus building system allows for the comprehensive use of sustainably-sourced, New Zealand-grown timber, across structural, exterior and interior building domains. Seismic performance, moisture management, energy efficiency, affordability and other factors are optimised in this unique product offering.
Our award-winning building system innovates in the sheer volume of timber used. Welhaus makes comprehensive use of New Zealand timber products resulting in light and airy homes, that although affordable and compact, have a feel of luxury and quietude.
Welhaus has also innovated to combine the ‘best of New Zealand product’, in its New Zealand-grown and manufactured panels. Welhaus is the first innovative manufacturer the first to combine recycled New Zealand wool insulation with CLT ‘Twin Skin’ panels in ceilings and under cross-laminated timber (XLAM) floors, and use this process exclusively in our Welpanels.
Crucially, the Welbuild system innovates in sustainability and energy-saving features. It employs cross-laminated twin-skin roof panels, a Pro-Clima diffusion layer, wool insulation, and an exterior watertight wrap. Together with a ventilated cavity system, this provides for a warm and healthy building, that is energy efficient and dry. The key is airtightness – a fantastic advance for affordable housing when the full life cycle of the house is taken into account
Research bases – the drive for efficiency and sustainability
Welhaus is driven by a passion for sustainability, quality construction, and to improve the efficiency of the building and construction process.
The industry needs to see change. A study comparing productivity (measured in contract dollars per work hours) found that since 1964 non-construction productivity has more than doubled, whereas the construction industry has experienced a productivity decrease of more than 20 percent (Khemlani, p4). In New Zealand there have been two pivotal reports on the major issue of housing affordability in New Zealand: 1) The New Zealand Productivity Commission Housing Affordability Inquiry in March 2012, and 2) The NZIER public discussion paper “The Home Affordability Challenge” suite of reforms needed in New Zealand dated July 2014.
Essentially, the situation that now exists in New Zealand is that:
1. As a population, a community, we do not have enough houses in key employment centres,
2. The homes that we are building are too expensive (and mainly in the top 50% of the sector),
3. We are dramatically “underbuilding” in the two lowest price quartiles of housing typologies, and finally
4. Labour productivity in the housing sector has not improved since 1980.
Further exacerbating these problems, the majority of homes built in New Zealand are bespoke and built by skilled practitioners (who, with the Canterbury recovery and Auckland property situation are themselves in short supply); and the homes that are built are largely built in an inefficient manner (slowly, outside factory conditions, prone to the elements, and cost and time associated with building teams and traditional manual labour methods). According to the Building Information Modelling (BIM) Acceleration (November 2014), home builders were originally identified as group that should take up BIM to aid in innovation and productivity gains but as the date of the report little interest has been shown by such parties.
Please see below for an illustration of the Welhaus response to these challenges, including references to appropriate research.
General overview of the product and how it is innovative
The Welhaus building system, encompassing our own Welpanels, in tandem with other high-technology timber products (including CLT floors, New Zealand wool insulation, and climate-friendly features such as Pro Clima diffusion technologies) provides the industry with pre-fabricated, engineered and sustainable buildings and building modules (including walls, bathroom modules and the like). Our computer-aided designs are applicable in residential, commercial (eg. multi-unit apartments, office buildings), industrial (factory/plant), health, education and many other applications. We deliver completed buildings to clients, or can also supply building materials (through our Welpanel manufacturing process) depending on client needs.
The Welpanel is our standard air tight, moisture diffusing, highly insulated, low energy, Carbon Zero panel. It is approximately twice the thickness of typical panels typically built to New Zealand code, and twice the quality according to Homestar criteria. Welpanels are constructed using a novel double cavity system, which deals effectively with moisture and energy transfer. We are the first company to meld New Zealand recycled wool insulation with CLT ceilings and floors, and use it exclusively in our Welpanel walls to improve air quality and comfort.
Welhaus is proud of a number of other product innovations / approaches:
Welhaus is taking up the innovation and efficiency challenge, in the building sector, using BIM (modelling). Our BIM platform modelled every part of our award-winning, affordable ‘Beach Barn’ design1 using meaningful objects, and so provided information required for controlling automated machinery with relative ease (and making it easier to price). Welhaus also employs BIM to create our Welpanels, floors, roofs as well as walls. These are all factory produced into panels (called cassettes) and the function and forms are tested on the computer screen, before being made by our skilled manufacturing teams in the Welhaus factory. Our factory setting allows the optimization of this technique, as fabrication and assembly are rationalized. Our innovation in this area will continue to evolve with the application of mass customization techniques by architects.
Digital design, computer numeric control (CNC) fabrication technologies. These and various other systems approaches allow mass customization to replace exact repetition as a means of achieving economies of scale in the construction space. Welhaus is at the forefront of such advances and has invested in the use of advanced modelling software and CNC fabrication technologies to develop the Welpanel and Welbuild System. Architects working with the Welhaus system can now create custom designs in which each module is different while achieving an industrialized economy of scale.
Our Industrial craft system fosters the following:
Increased ability for collaboration and single point of responsibility via our procurement system.
Increased collaboration and flexibility via our Integrated Design process.
Reduced construction time of up to 50% and therefore lower hard costs, soft costs, financing costs, out-of-service costs and a faster return on investment.
Improvement of building craft and therefore quality via our factory setting
Increased efficiency through reduced time and waste factors
Improved project sustainability and facilitates a Homestar rating of around x2 the Standard NZ code
Minimal disruptions to adjacent buildings and occupants, and increased cleanliness.
Greater ability to manufacture components with a high degree of technical complexity.
Minimises various site constraints such as staging, weather, transportation, etc.
Reduces the possibility of on-site vandalism or theft.
Improved conditions for construction workers
Creates the possibility of moving the structure to a new location.
The client and architect can oversee and preview parts of the structure in the factory.
Enabling early identification and resolution of conflicts, subverting the large costs associated with discovery of such conflicts on-site.
Export-focused approach. At the heart of our innovative culture lies the creation of an offsite manufacturing business based on exportability of the Welbuild Construction System (WCS) which is in itself unique, in given that most construction companies are geared to provide onsite domestic construction (with the main prefabricated element perhaps being an open wooden or steel frame delivered to site). It is the extent and breadth to which Welhaus have pre-engineered, used New Zealand-sourced and renewable building materials, adopted BIM technology, created Panel Products and generally industrialised to improve our craft which makes us unique.
Welhaus champions timber: the innovative, sustainable product of the future. Timber construction has been internationally accepted as an "environmentally responsible" choice, when compared to alternative materials such as steel, concrete or aluminium. This can be demonstrated from a life cycle analysis, including the impacts of material extraction, manufacture, construction, use and disposal. Welhaus is rightly proud to be championing New Zealand-grown timber, timber being the world’s most sustainable building material and likely the only renewable resource in the construction sector (The Hastoe Housing corporation report on Sustainable Homes 2000). Further, unlike concrete and steel, wood has zero “embodied carbon” (i.e. the amount of carbon used in the process of manufacturing a building product). Research entitled “An Application of the CEN/TC350 standards to an Energy and Carbon LCA of timber used in construction, and the effect of end-of-life scenarios” even goes as far to say that the use of timber building systems has the potential to have a negative carbon impact over its lifecycle, if a recycle or incinerate with energy recovery End of Life (EoL) scenario can be guaranteed.
Welhaus sources raw product from industry leaders. We are proud to partner with other industry leaders in sustainable construction. An assessment of the environmental impacts of our partner Nelson Pine, and their ‘LVL 11’ product that Welhaus uses almost exclusively, indicates that the manufacturing process results in very few emissions of any kind. The raw materials are sourced from renewable plantations in the Nelson region. Nelson Pine LVL is produced in a high-technology mill which has strict environmental controls on amenity features and emission levels. Burning of wood waste generated in veneer preparation and billet processing provides most of the onsite heating resulting in a major reduction in CO2 emissions compared with burning fossil fuels, and makes Nelson Pine LVL manufacturing greenhouse neutral. Further, the technological base of manufacture ensures that Nelson Pine LVL is a more efficient use of wood fibre, with less waste than sawn timber.
Application in Christchurch
Welhaus have created a Hybrid Welbuild system that uses a Welhaus’s Welpanel, a lightweight engineered closed timber panel in conjunction with CLT floors and a TTT’s raft system for an economic, environmental and social response to rebuilding on liquefaction-damaged land (or on sloping sections as an alternative to typical concrete foundations).
Strength and durability are our priorities. Welpanels and the Welbuild system are engineered for seismic strength in response to the Christchurch earthquakes. In fact, the system is engineered to 80% of most extreme wind, snow, hail and other conditions found anywhere in New Zealand (and therefore over-engineered for typical applications in which we live, work, play and learn). This provides comfort in the knowledge of improved residential housing durability and security.
Further improving the structural strength of the Welhaus product, is that fact that we are one of the few exclusive users of NZ LVL 11 from Nelson Pine. Nelson Pine LVL properties are found to be superior to those of glued laminated timber (glulam) and stress graded timber. The average of most of the Nelson Pine strength characteristics is higher, and the variation is significantly lower when compared to solid wood. The Nelson Pine LVL is dimensionally stable, resists warping and twisting and is machined to consistently uniform sizes.
The Welpanel while being unusually resistant to the elements still benefits from the flexible properties of wood and resulting in a more adaptable system framing alternatives such as steel. The Welbuild grid-based design system means that panel sizes can be easily modified to suit client needs over their lifetime. The highest Lifemark rating for accessibility, flexibility and adaptability is easily achieved using the Welhouse Welbuild system as our recent entry into the PrefabNZ’s UniPod Modular Bathroom competition for Welhaus’s Rapaki attests. The Rapaki is well suited to Elderly Persons Accommodation, Social Housing, Hotel Fitouts and any other application that requires a level floor with full mobility access.
Welhauses are creating a paradigm shift in the Christchurch construction industry through:
Provision of higher quality homes and neighbourhood building with lower operating costs; and improved occupant health and well-being
Faster and more efficient construction, and reduction of waste
Cost competitiveness and time certainty
Ultimately better buildings for New Zealanders and for the environment (50% less waste; 40% less Greenhouse Gas emissions)
At one end of the continuum the vast majority of buildings constructed today use some prefabrication whereas our panelised and modular focus lies at other end of a continuum (our system is almost entirely prefabricated). Panelised and modular construction expands prefabrication as a viable and beneficial option for an increasing number of building project types.
Our Unique Philosophy
Welhaus’s philosophy is one of whole building, taking into account the social, environment and economic aspects to everything we do. We are most interested in how every part of the process and every element interacts. For example, we have gone one step beyond prefabrication, we pre-engineer to ensure that the Welbuild system performs as a whole system. What makes Welhaus unique is the extent of integrated design and team approach; rather than the traditional method of relying on the expertise of specialists who work in isolated fields, we bring them all together at the incept of design and keep them together throughout. This interconnectedness is at the core of our innovative culture.
Potential export markets considered
Welhaus sees great potential for export, and application of the Welbuild Construction System (WCS) offshore – whether in terms of the delivery of ‘whole’ buildings, or building products (Welpanels).
Competitive advantages include the high-profile of sustainably-sourced and grown New Zealand timber, and New Zealand’s ‘pure’ brand. Our cost-effectiveness also stands us in good stead. The Welbuild system is significantly quicker to assemble on site than traditional housing, watertight within days. The size and weight of each panel has been set up for efficient transport, meaning it is fully exportable.
At present, we are informally exploring:
Pacific Islands: focus on provision of accommodation for the tourism market, also application of our affordable/durable timber constructions in the post-disaster/post-cyclone context
Japan: prefabricated housing following on from previous Fraemohs and Lockwood export examples
Indonesia: working with New Zealand domiciled Business Development Consultant, regarding partnerships with Australian developers of tourist accommodation
Australia: via our Australian domiciled Business Development Consultant and supply partners XLAM
Further markets of potential, including those where free trade / trade agreement provisions provide amenable opportunities for NZ exporters.
Our action plan. We are proud to be building the world’s healthiest homes from sustainably-managed New Zealand forests, and it’s a pure New Zealand story worth exporting. However, there are many challenges to this approach not least of which come from a focus on “wood miles” such as Japans campaign to calculate the CO2 discharged over distance to ensure that they meet Kyoto targets. We recognise we need to do more research on whether our engineered panels achieves a similar performance to traditional building using less wood and therefore less CO2 making us more competitive. There may also be a similar argument to that which came from a German paper published in 2005 (Schlich E, Fleissner U (2005). The Ecology of Scale: Assessment of Regional Energy Turnover and Comparison with Global Food. The International Journal of Life Cycle Assessment 10(3), 213–223) which compared the embodied energy in frozen lamb from New Zealand and Germany using a life cycle approach. The paper challenged general thinking that regional food production and distribution systems are less energy intensive than global systems, and argued that “ecological quality is mainly influenced by operational efficiency and not by the marketing distance itself” although this was by no means consensus and required more research according to Landcare Research NZ.
WELHAUS PROPERTY DEVELOPMENT AND INVESTMENT Welhaus has consulted, advised on and/or project managed NZD 0.25 Billion worth of property developments since 2005. We advise on the best use of sites by first testing whether it’s economically viable to “re-use, recycle and reduce” and as a result Welhaus has had a great deal of involvement in redevelopment, refurbishment and regeneration of building spaces. Excess energy consumption over the Life Cycle Energy of buildings, relatively high demand in supply constrained areas and natural or human based events that cause shortages, including poor design/build in Auckland and the Earthquakes in Christchurch, are some of the key factors driving new construction. To find solutions these issues, Welhaus advocates for compact construction and urban infill as a more sustainable alternative to urban sprawl; it’s the “urban European” approach to work, living and play although even this approach has not proven to deliver affordable housing in developed cities with creative high growth business centres.
WELHAUS PROPERTY (PROGRAMME AND PROJECT) ACHIEVEMENTS INCLUDE:
Strengthening the earthquake prone Caddy Shack Building Ltd.Client: Caddyshack Property Limited (Dan Tremewan, Brian Skeggs and Carl Lawson) Engineers: Structex, Contractors: Welhaus. The Brief: to upgrade the building to more than 67% of the code with minimal interruption to Caddyshack Minigolf Limited the business that has operated in there for over 15 years. To date welhaus has achieved this work within only 2 days interruption to trading over a 4 month upgrade programme. Quotes for the structural upgrade were over 790,000 plus GST and Welhaus’s construction manager estimated $290,000 plus gst for the structural upgrade and $70,000 for Fire Compliance and the programme is tracking within budget and the schedule. Structex are so impressed with the way we worked together to minimise business interruption that they are highlighting the project in their next press release. The building value will increase from $800,000 to $1,600,000 as a result of our integrated approach.
Retail, Fitness Centre and Character Office: Taranaki Street, Wellington (Seismic Strengthening) Key client: Jay Car Electronics (Competition to Dick Smith Australia). Developer: Dan Tremewan. Engineers: Dunning Thornton. Contractors: In-house (see current team at end of project list). The Brief: Dan’s vision for this property was originally a conversion to Student Accommodation as there was a growing shortage in the area servicing both Massey and Victoria university who were prepared to secure the site themselves; however, upon his further investigation a conversion was not suitable due to the seismically unsupported state of the building, from an engineering economics perspective. Project Realisation: On confirmation of the benefits of enhancing existing use Dan refurbished the retail show room space on ground floor in the building to attract Jay Car Electronics. Soon after Dan arranged for the Powerhouse Gym to move from the top floor to more suitable warehouse space behind retail on ground floor, and filled up the floors above with office tenants who were attracted to his “New York” loft style character conversion complete with polished wooden floors, exposed wooden beams and interior brick walls. He contained cost for the complete refurbishment to only $475,000 and through the introduction of new leases managed to increase the buildings valuation from 1.1 million to 2.6 million. 6
Heritage Building: Return Servicemen’s League, Mount Victoria, Wellington Key Client(s): Kapiti Coast Health. Developer: Dan Tremewan. Architects: Tse Architects. Urban Planners: Urban Perspectives. Project Team: In-house Contractors. The Brief: Dan’s challenge of this project was to make the best use of the site while retaining the significant, unique historical and cultural heritage features of the building. Project Realisation: The predominate characteristics of the surrounding area were commercial and residential with some light industry so redevelopment required a mixed use approach with commercial on ground floor and residential apartment living above with adequate separation between the two activities. My investigation of the importance of the site lead me to a researcher who had made the building the subject of her PHD which, through a collaborative approach that I negotiated, provided a vast amount of data and direction for the project, especially in regard to which significant features that should be highlighted in the successful stage one redevelopment overseen by me prior sale of the site.
Redevelopment of H&J Smith building for Key Tenants, Nelson Key Clients: Postie Plus, and plan for New Zealand Post. Developer: Dan Tremewan. Architects: Daines & Associates. Engineers: Transfeild Worley Ltd. Project Team: In-house Contractors. The Brief: To find tenants that would maximise the value of a prime building and location, Dan discovered Kiwibank, New Zealand Post and Postie Plus were all looking to strengthen their main retail presence in central nelson except all had very different demands for the ground retail floor position of the building so the challenge was to accommodate the first tenant to sign without compromising the attractiveness of the balance of the large ground floor plate for the second. Project Realisation: The project was complete within time and budget, and the value of building increased from NZD 2.7 to 5.1 Million showing Tremewan’s skill at getting the best and highest use out of sites, bringing benefit to stakeholders and local community.
Business Centre Business with Ground Floor Retail - Cashel Street, Christchurch Key Clients: Canterbury Frozen Meat, Prison Services. Developer: Dan Tremewan. Architect: Graeme Jacobs Engineers: Lewis and Barrow Ltd. Construction: Lanyon and Le Compte. Project Team: In-house Contractors. The brief: WELHAUS purchased the Warren and Mahoney designed Canterbury Frozen Meat building in April 2004 to convert the empty floor space into retail and serviced offices for, a government tenant and small businesses (recognising that larger floor plates were sitting empty in many buildings on the east side of the City). Project Realisation: Dan undertook an extensive refurbishment project, stripping the existing 70’s interior fitout and redeveloping the space into small to medium size offices, and thereby improving the building from D to B/C grade. This refurbishment was accomplished very quickly, taking only 6 weeks, thus minimising disruption to the building’s cash-flow. With the refurbishment complete, the WELHAUS Business Centre was also created on the second, third and fourth floors, totalling approximately 840 square metres of lettable area raising the value from NZD 2.8 Million to 4.5 Million.
Hospitality and Accommodation: Latimer Square, Christchurch Key Clients: The Bicycle Thief (Award Winning). Developer: Dan Tremewan. Engineers: O’Loughlin Taylor Spence. Architects Londsdale. Project Team: In-house Contractors. The Brief: The building was to be converted from car-parking, a language school, and office space to one of the most respected bar restaurants in Christchurch on the ground floor and “Flashpakers” accommodation on the upper floors, for a well-established regional operator. Project Realisation: the building was purchased for NZD 1.9 million, NZD750,000 was spent on the conversion to “flashpackers” and bar using some of the car-park space on the ground level. The project was completed as per the budget, including a pre-agreed conditional extension of time, and the final valuation on file prior to fitout contributions from the backpackers was NZD 3.4 Million demonstrating significant upside in this project.
Travel and Design Centre, Car-park Building: Worcester Street, Christchurch Key Clients: Ricthies Travel, NZ Design Institute. Developer: Dan Tremewan. Engineers: Powell Fenwick Consultants. Project Team: In-house Contractors. The Brief: WELHAUS purchased this 6 level building totalling 1118 square meters of lettable space for NZD 1.75 million with 3 floors vacant to attract a design and communications school which had specific fit-out requirements. 7 Project Realised: Dan delivered three refurbished floors to client’s specifications, on demand, at a cost of NZD 227,000 in exchange for their occupancy of the remaining vacant space. The building had been sitting vacant for years prior, this project helping to revitalise the city centre. The Welhaus team also completed the adjacent car parking building finished with turntable and car lift creating an additional 21 spaces while at the same time providing improved access for Intercity Buses who occupied the ground floor tenancy and as a result we were able to sell the building for around NZD 2.3 Million six months later.
Multi-Family Housing - Brockworth Place, Riccarton, Christchurch Key Clients: WELHAUS Financial Investors and Affordable Housing Purchasers. Developer: Dan Tremewan. Architects: Noordanus. Construction: AMC Project Team: In-house Contractors. The Brief: To create two sets of seven 3-4 bedroom townhouses in this rapidly changing area of Riccarton, for young professionals working close to Hagley Park, households that needed to be in the Christchurch Boys and Girls High School zone. All were to be north facing to create a warm, sunny living environment suitable for young families. Project Realisation: Floor areas ranged from 105 to 140 square metres, and typical of a Welhaus multimillion dollar new build project the actual square metre realised was below the industry (Rawlinson’s) benchmark. A quality product was delivered while retaining margins through careful planning and execution, all within the desired timeframe and all sold easily to the target market.
Redevelopment of Capiche House for Key Clients, Dixon St Wellington Key Client(s): Sharp New Zealand, Government Health Agency. Developer: Dan Tremewan. Architects. McKenzie Higham. Engineers: Spenser Holmes. Project Team: In-house Contractors. The Brief: To upgrade the empty ground floor retail tenancy for Sharp NZ Office and Primary Wellington Retail Premises and the first floor for a government Agency. Project Realisation: Upgraded the property within the agreed scope, time and specifications and within the NZD 700,000 budgeted thereby increasing the value of the building from NZD 3.2 to 4.6 Million. The increases in value are of course the best demonstrations of Tremewan ability to determine best use, effectively manage construction and obtain desired results.
Compact Urban Housing - Barbadoes Street, St Albans, Christchurch Key Clients: WELHAUS Financial and Affordable Housing Purchasers. Developer: Dan Tremewan. Architects: Dalman Architecture. Construction: Lanyon & Le Compte. Project Team: In-house Contractors. The Brief: To provide more compact housing in line with the densities desired by council as set out in the city plan. Project Realisation: Both developments (one of 9 units and one of 6 units) were 3-level Tilt-Slab construction, prefabricated offsite, to reduce onsite time bringing costs in line with lighter wood framed in-situ alternatives. Every unit was created facing north using natural solar energy and the thermal mass of the panels to create a temperate, light living environment. The inexpensive exteriors and roofs balanced out upfront construction costs with the on-going savings from reduce energy, maintenance and replacement costs the clients would face over the lifetime of the building. Re-sale value of these units has been strong partly because of their durability.
Affordable Housing, Mixed Use Office and Retail - Riddiford Street, Newtown, Wellington Key Clients: ANZ, Instant Finance, WELHAUS Group. Developer: Dan Tremewan. Architects: McKenzie Higham. Engineers: Dunning Thornton. Project Team: In-house Contractors. The Brief: The building occupies a corner site in the centre of Newtown’s shopping precinct, a mixed use area with high demand for affordable housing making it economic to unit title the flats for renters wishing to own. Project Realisation: Dan’s strategy with this building was to refurbish the tenancies, increase the rents to market and generally utilise the space in the building more efficiently to improve the value from NZD 2.2 million to NZD 2.9 million. More specifically, he assessed that by unit titling the residential part of the commercial building, each apartment would then sell on residential yields rather than commercial cap rates (thereby increasing value by another NZD 700,000 while still being able to provide residential properties at prices below the Wellington medium). That aim was realised and Welhaus repeated the process for several other projects like it such as on top of the National Bank building on Main St, in Lower Hutt.
Tourism Destination - The Lindale Centre, Paraparaumu Key Clients: Fonterra, Lindale Farm. Developer: Dan Tremewan. Architect: Aonui Architecture. Project Team: In-house Contractors. Project Brief: Providing entertainment, gourmet and shopping facilities for the Wellington region’s international tourists, this iconic property & tourist centre had endless development opportunities to be explored owing to substantial land area, and a growing tourist market. Project Realisation: Dan provided a Master plan for the site based on evidence of fundamental demand drivers then commenced the implementation of that plan. The first successful project completed was the revitalisation of the existing site including upgrades of most of the tenancies. The second milestone being a speculative fit out designed to attract an Art Gallery operator, the third being redevelopment of the farm attraction with the aim of increasing visitor numbers in order to secure existing tenants such as the wellknown Fonterra company Kapiti Cheese (whose leases, like the other retailers, were contingent on the success of visitor attractions, all were completed successfully). Once the existing building and economic infrastructure was strengthened we were able to move to the expansion part of the Master Plan starting with the detailing of a children’s Play Centre and moving on to projects that involved discussions with local Iwi, to run a Maori Village attraction unique to Wellington, a hive for visiting dignitaries. Independent Retirement Living, Health/Wellbeing - Serco Building, Thorndon, Wellington. Key Client(s): Presbyterian Support Services. Developer: Dan Tremewan. Architects: Novak + Middleton. Engineers: Beca. Landscape Architects: Boffa Miskell The Brief and Project Response: To design an independent living complex aimed at the retirement sector within the vacant Transfield site in Thorndon Wellington. The result was The George: resea