Viaduct Harbour Apartments
Viaduct Harbour, originally known as Viaduct Basin, was built in the early 1900’s when the dramatic increase in the size of visiting cargo ships prevented them from mooring at Auckland’s original wharves and it was proposed that they moor out in the Waitemata Harbour Channel and be unloaded into "lighters" - small barges that would then ferry the goods to the new Viaduct Lighter Basin. The shipping companies refused to co-operate and forced the Harbour Board to engage in dredging and construct new wharves such as Princes & Queens Wharf. This left the partially completed Lighter Basin without a real purpose, so it was used to house the fishing fleet, a fish market, a wholesale vegetable, fruit & flower market and various warehouses plus shipping stores. Timber mills and foundries associated with the gowing ship building trade occupied the western side of the Basin. Later the far western side of the area was used for shipping fuel storage, known today as Tank Farm.
The redevelopment of the Viaduct Basin in the late 1990's was mainly due to arrival of the America’s Cup Challenge and the desire to open up the waterfront to all Aucklanders.
It is now a thriving part of Auckland with 150 marina berths catering to pleasure craft, super yachts and commercial vessels plus cafes, restaurants, offices, an Event Centre, hotels and a number of apartment complexes.
The 2010 opening of the Te Wero Pedestrian Bridge in time for the RWC has brought the two sides of the Basin closer together so that the development of Silo Marina & Park and the Wynyard Quarter are now closely linked with the main café & restaurant area of Viaduct Harbour and Princes Wharf.
The area now provides an unique venue base for marine events such as the America’s Cup, Louis Vuitton Regattas, Volvo Round the World Race stopover and the Auckland Boat Show. It also hosts NZ Fashion Week, NZ Ironman, a summer outdoor cinema, markets and visiting performing shows.
Visitors can sign up to sail on an America's Cup yacht, wonder at the super yachts berthed in the marina and enjoy New Zealand hospitality at one of the many restaurants and bars that line the water's edge.
A number of apartment complexes have been built in the area, the first being the unique Princes Wharf Apartments and Hilton Hotel designed by the Leuschke Group to resemble a liner when viewed from the sea.
Other complexes include The Sebel Suites and The Quays which overlook the Eastern Viaduct Marina, around the corner is The Parc and Market Place Apartments which were built on the site of Turners & Growers Vegetable & Flower Markets. The Point and Viaduct Point Complexes are on the edge of the Waitemata Plaza Marina – originally where the fishing fleets moored, while the Lighter Quay Complex overlooks the Lighter Basin itself. More apartments are scheduled to be built in the Wynyard Quarter in 2015.