Building rumours: 9-13 Stout St
I haven't heard any more information about the Wakefield St car yard that I mentioned in my last building rumours post, and given that the cars are still there (plus a carwash!) I suspect that nothing is going to happen just yet. However, I've recently heard a rumour about another site that could have a significant impact on the city.
An architect from a major firm suggested that an office building of at least 20 storeys is planned for 9-13 Stout St, currently the site of a multi-storey carpark on the corner with Ballance St.
This could be a contentious site, given that the owners were refused resource consent for a billboard on the existing building, on the grounds that the "visual clutter" would be out of character with an area that includes important public buildings such as the new Supreme Court. Much of the site is also in the part of the new Stout St heritage area (2.2MB PDF) that under the central area review will have a height limit of 30m rather than the current 75m: maybe that explains why the developers are planning it now? Depending upon the stud heights, a 20-storey building could fit under the 75m limit and thus not be notified.
Personally, I don't think it's a bad thing. As the photo above shows, there's quite a range of tall buildings in the area, and by housing some more workers between Lambton Quay and the railway station it could help fill in the gap between the core CBD and Harbour Quays. As long as it steps down toward the Supreme Court and Missions to Seamen ends of the site, rather than simply extruding the site plan all the way to the height limit, it could fit into the streetscape quite satisfactorily. But all this is speculation anyway: does anyone have any more concrete information?