Rumours run rife over brothel

Rumours a 45-bedroom boarding home being built in Birkenhead will become a brothel are “unsubstantiated”.

Residents have contacted the North Shore Times with claims the 194 Hinemoa St “adults’ only” hotel will be used as a brothel.

Two other hotels are run in Panmure and Otahuhu by the same developer.

One resident, Shirley-Ann McCrystal, says she was told by Panmure businesses the hotel in their area was “nothing more or less than a brothel”.

“There is the argument that prostitution is a legalised ‘profession’ but it is the addition of more drunken ne’er do wells that hang about them which our neighbourhood can do with out thank you.”

But Panmure Business Association town manager Chris Sutton says it is “absolutely not” a brothel.

Mrs Sutton says residents raised the same concerns but those living in the Panmure hotel are working and are part of the community.

It was also non-notified which concerned the community, Mrs Sutton says.

Kaipatiki Local Board chairwoman Lindsay Waugh also disputes the “unsubstantiated” claim.

“Until there is any evidence that this is intended as a brothel I will not respond to unsubstantiated urban myths. There has been no indication of this development becoming a brothel in the resource consent application.”

Residents have questioned Auckland Council after the three-storey boarding house development was approved.

The council says public input was not needed as the effects of the building on the area were deemed minor.

Rooms range in size between 14 square metres and 22sqm with only 13 car parks for residents and staff.

North Shore’s district plan says a minimum of one car park to three residents is required.

This means the boarding house will have a three-park shortfall but a traffic engineer deemed it would not have significant impact.

Birkenhead Residents Association says the validity of a boarding house not going through a public feedback process is questionable.

The council says impacts on the surrounding area “were not more than minor and therefore concluded that full public notification was not required on this occasion”.

It says the project won’t adversely affect neighbours of the boarding house.

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