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Characterful Gisborne building is one for investor books

A landmark character commercial building in Gisborne’s city centre has come to the market for sale, with its vacant possession opening the door to creating an upper level apartment conversion above a ground floor retail tenancy.

The property at 62 Gladstone Road is being vacated by stalwart occupiers Muirs Bookshop – one of New Zealand’s largest and oldest independent book retailers – with the business set to relocate to premises further along this busy main street. For many years, there was a café upstairs which utilised the sunny balcony and complemented the popular bookshop on the ground floor.

The two-level character masonry building dates back to the early-1900s and has had many incarnations since starting out as Burton and Griffiths ironmongers and hardware store. Newspaper advertisements in 1907 stated that the store inventory included harvesting and carpenters’ tools, bush felling tools and builders’ requisites, and a furnishing department.

The property offers a total 440sqm of floor area and sits on a narrow 373sqm site. There is a full-height glazed frontage for the street level retail tenancy, an internal staircase and other original features like intricate stained glass fanlight windows on the upper level, exposed brick walls and ceiling trusses, and the wrought iron upper balcony.

It is listed as a heritage building in the Gisborne District Council's district plan, but not on the New Zealand Historic Places Trust register. The building was strengthened in 2013 and is at 100% of current new building standard code.

The north-facing freehold property will be sold by tender, closing Wednesday 6th March through Bayleys Gisborne commercial salesperson Mike Florance.

As a proven commercial location, Florance said a new owner could seek a replacement retail or office tenant for the ground floor premises and potentially look to convert the upper level to a “lock-and-leave” city apartment.

“I’ve been fielding good enquiry on the property from a range of prospective local buyers keen to reinvest in their city and see it flourish.

“The Gisborne District Council is also keen to see more residential accommodation within the CBD to create a vibrant and compact 24-hour city and encourages inner-city apartment living to optimise vacant second floors.”

Florance said the property has off-street parking and rear access via a right of way. To develop the upper floors as an apartment, he suggested the retail tenancy be consolidated towards the Gladstone Road frontage to form dedicated private access to the upper level.

“This commercial investment property provides huge scope for a new owner to add value and optimise the good bones that the building boasts.

“It’s a piece of Gisborne’s early trading history and makes a strong contribution to the streetscape in this stretch of the main street.”

Click here for more information on the listing.

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