Northcote – so much more to offer
Northcote may be one of Auckland’s best-kept secrets, but it won’t stay that way for long.
Where can you live so close to the city, with all its opportunities for work and play, and still enjoy a laid-back lifestyle that is all about beaches, parks, sports, great shopping, and casual dining out? Northcote unlocks both the city action and the North Shore lifestyle like nowhere else. The Viaduct, Wynyard Quarter, Takapuna Beach, North Harbour Stadium, Albany, they’re all so close.
What’s more, Northcote is only going to get better. There are great plans for the suburb, many of them underway already. In a few short years, Northcote’s classic mall will have been transformed, you will be where everybody wants to be.
Elevation is within easy walking distance of two of the best-known reserves on the North Shore. With their open fields, pretty lakes and established woodlands, Onepoto Domain and Onewa Domain have been favorite haunts for generations of Aucklanders.
Onepoto is the larger of the two domains, with two small lakes nestling amidst playing fields, walking and cycling tracks and wetland/bush areas. Enthusiasts of model sailboats and radio control boats make frequent use of the lakes, while other visitors enjoy the duck ponds, adventure playground, barbecues and picnic spots.
Home of the North Shore’s largest netball centre, Onewa Domain also hosts other sports including rugby, cricket and athletics. Smith’s Bush, with its broad walkways, is popular with joggers and walkers. International sports teams can often be seen training on its playing fields.
Eating & Entertainment
If you like exploring the cuisines of the world, you’ll love living at Elevation. A few hundred metres up the road, Northcote Central offers more than 25 ethnic restaurants. A little further away, Birkenhead has an even more diverse range of cuisines – Japanese, Korean, Indian, Chinese, Thai, Malaysian, Mexican, Turkish and Italian, and that’s just for starters! Lots of takeaway options too.
Want to go a little more upscale? Takapuna beckons, with everything from great brunch spots like Takapuna Beach Café through to fine dining. Standouts include Tok Tok, Madame Woo, El Humaro, and the beachside favourites, Regatta, Franc’s and Aubergine.
If you like a quiet drink with friends, Beer Spot is making a big name for itself just down the road from Elevation. Birkenhead has a growing number of friendly neighbourhood bars, and Takapuna is now one of Auckland’s top spots for enjoying the craft beer renaissance.
Takapuna also has its Monterey Cinemas, Pumphouse Theatre and the Bruce Mason Centre, where you’ll see an ever-changing line-up of stellar comedy, concert, dance and theatre performers.
When it comes to a variety of shops, Northcote Central is hard to beat. More than 90 retail outlets are found in this classic mall, which also has 600 car parks. (Of course, you’ll often be on foot, as Elevation is only a short walk away.)
Countdown has all your everyday needs, while several specialty supermarkets offer a wide range of delicious food ingredients.
Where else will you shop? Takapuna is only six minutes’ drive, with more than 70 shops in the North Shore Mall alone. The legendary Takapuna Market on Sundays is also a big drawcard.
But why confine yourself to the North Shore? Remember, it’s only ten minutes to Commercial Bay and Britomart, where fashionistas can shop to their heart’s content. You can also be in Ponsonby in a matter of minutes.
Albany Mega Centre (10-15 minutes’ drive) has all the big names, so whatever you’re looking for, it’s not far away.
Living at Elevation you’ll be well served by the local schools. You’re zoned for Northcote Primary and Northcote Intermediate schools. Both are very well established, with strong reputations. Northcote Intermediate is almost on your doorstep. Secondary school pupils go to Northcote College, which is within walking distance on Onewa Road.
Here’s a secret – you’re as close to the CBD as many of the inner-city suburbs. Get on the motorway at either Northcote Road or Onewa Road, and you’re in the heart of the city within 10-15 minutes, depending on traffic. You’re also close to Albany, with a similar travel time.
Two major bus routes run past your door, taking you to Birkenhead, Takapuna or Smales Farm. At Akoranga and Smales Farm you can connect directly with the city-bound Northern Express.
A fascinating history
The first inhabitants of Northcote were Ngati Tai, although they had been gradually displaced by Ngati Whatua prior to the arrival of the Europeans.
After the founding of Auckland in 1840, what is now Northcote Point was named Rough Point, after Captain David Rough, Auckland’s first harbour master. Subsequently, it was named Stokes Point, before becoming Northcote in the 1880s. At this time the land was sub-divided, and the borough was established not long after.
Originally the area was home to farmers and industrial enterprises, but as the 20th century progressed Northcote became the suburb it is today. Of great significance was the opening of the Harbour Bridge in 1959, which gave the area a new lease of life. Not only did this bring the city much closer, but the bridge opening also saw a great lift in real estate values.
The Northcote Mall, thought to be the first of its kind in New Zealand, opened at this time.
An exciting future
Over the next decade, Northcote will be transformed. More than 1,500 new homes will be built, while the town centre will be completely renewed. New shops, eateries, gathering spaces, laneways, offices and apartments will all feature in this large-scale project, set to begin in 2023.
Another major initiative is the Te Ara Awataha Greenway. When completed this will link several of Northcote’s parks and neighbourhoods to each other and the town centre. It will provide safe walking and cycling for residents who wish to avoid busy roads.