Retail developers fined for breaching Auckland City consent rules

(Source: Bigstock)

Several retail developers have been fined $133,000 for serious breaches of the Building Act when carrying out a project in Remuera.

Judge Kirsten Lummis has fined York Projects and its director Simon Church a combined $55,000 for carrying out work without a building consent.

Guardian Retail 415 and Guardian Retail 405 were fined $32,500 as owners of the properties, while The Carpentry Company and its directors Svend Johannsen and Damian Baker were fined $45,500 for falling foul of the Act.

In 2020, the Guardian Group initiated a project aimed to revitalise the heart of Remuera, which included construction of pavilion structures for hospitality and retail outlets.

The group York Projects to oversee the development including the consenting applications. York Projects then engaged The Carpentry Company as the main contractor.

Despite the necessary consents not being in place, Church still instructed the contractors to start the work.

The Auckland Council required the Guardian Group to cease the project in April 2022 as it breached the Building Act.

Judge Lummis stated deterrence is important given this was a multimillion-dollar project.

“There was a risk that if the court imposed a weak penalty, other developers may be tempted to circumvent the building consent process in favour of the certificate of acceptance process to achieve a speedier completion and other commercial efficiencies,” she added.

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