Collapse halts work on Coast highway site

Work has stalled on this prominent construction site in Ōrewa. An artist’s impression of how the final complex could look.

Work ground to a halt at the end of last year on a  site at 406-408 Hibiscus Coast Highway, Ōrewa where 17 homes were being built.

The Chinese builder, EZYBuilding Construction & Consulting and EZYBuilding Group Co. (both with sole director Michael Lee of Auckland), went into liquidation on December 23.

EZYBuilding Construction owes more than half a million to creditors, with a large chunk of that ($407,000) to Bunnings, while EZYBuilding Group owes more than $3.9m.

On the other side of the ledger, EZYBuilding Group is owed almost $2.3 million by the Ōrewa site’s owner/developer, Treasure Plus, and just over $845,500 by BA Developments. However, the liquidator notes that some of the sums owed to the company are disputed. Sole director of Treasure Plus is Shaohuan Liu of Auckland.

It appears a relatively small number of local sub-contractors and suppliers have been affected – Bunnings would not comment on whether the large debt is owed to its Silverdale branch, as liquidation is proceeding.

Before the collapse, a number of issues had already been red-flagged at the site, according to Auckland Council.

A spokesperson says Council inspectors found construction at 406-408 Hibiscus Coast Highway “to be consistently non-compliant from early stages of the project, resulting in multiple failed inspections”.

The ongoing issues resulted in Council scaling up its inspections until all non-compliant works and failed inspections were remedied.

“Council did not issue a ‘stop works’ or ‘dangerous building’ notice for the site, rather works stopped and the site was closed when building company ‘EZYBuild’ went into liquidation,” the spokesperson says.

Hibiscus Matters understands none of the homes were pre-sold off the plans, but potential buyers have been registering their interest.

The complex is still being marketed online for sale, with prices ranging from $999,000-$1.2 million.

The Council spokesperson says that a project management company has recently been assigned to manage the site and the process of appointing a new contractor to carry out remedial work has begun.

Hibiscus Matters was unable to contact any of the company directors involved for comment.


Background
The site was originally two adjoining properties with one home on each. They were sold together as a single 2247sqm piece of land in 2015 for just under $3 million • Auckland Council approved building consent plans for the development in 2019 • EZYBuilding’s website describes the company as “NZ’s longest-serving, most respected Chinese construction company”. The company was formed in 2016 by Michael Lee. Among its projects are 100-plus terraced houses in Addison Parkside, Takanini and seven bungalows in Mt Eden.


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