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Buying a house right above future NorthConnex Tunnel

Discussion in 'General Property Chat' started by William W, 12th Oct, 2016.

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  1. William W

    William W Member

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    Hi guys, Sorry for the long post. I am looking to buy a house in Normanhurst this Saturday (Auction). In the contract it shows that the underground land will be acquired by government to build the NorthConnex tunnel. The contract included a letter from the Roads & Maritime Services to the vendor stating:

    ' It is important to note that in most cases, acquisition of land for the purpose of underground road facilities will not affect the future use of your property.

    Subject to your council's normal regulations and approvals you will be able to:
    * Carry out improvement such as installing a swimming pool;
    * Dig deeper foundations for a new building, second storey additions, etc; and
    * Undertake property development.

    RMS proposes to horizontally subdivide part of the subject property to create 2 lots as sub-surface stratum to be acquired by RMS and a third lot to remain as your land above the level of the sub-surface stratum lots.'

    Question 1: There is a graph on the contract showing the minimum distance between ground level and upper limit of proposed stratum acquisition is about 21metres. But the agent is telling me, also says on NorthConnex Website the tunnel will be 33 meters below ground level. So is it actually 21 or 33 meters?

    Question 2: What does it mean by RMS proposes to horizontally subdivide part of the subject property to create 2 lots? I don't have to subdivide the property do i?

    Question 3: The tunnel will divert all the big freight trucks from Pennant Hills Road to inside the tunnel, If at 21 or 33 meters below ground, Will noises and vibrations likely be felt in the house?
    The house is located almost 3km away from the air vent, pollution shouldnt be a problem?

    Question 4: The house is built in the 1930s, very solid double break house. Is it likely it will get damaged during the construction stage of the tunnel as it is an old house?

    Question 5: What will be the future impact on the sale of the property if i want to sell say in 5 to 10 years time? I understand on google map there will appear to be a main road right next to the house but actually being the tunnel.

    Sorry about the long post as it is a big purchase for me, i personally really like the house, but i am just so nervous for it being right above the tunnel.
     
  2. Scott No Mates

    Scott No Mates Well-Known Member

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    @William W - all valid questions, so I will point you to a very comparable example with the M2.

    upload_2016-10-12_11-48-40.png

    The houses circled are the ones above the road tunnel on the M2 at North Epping. These were resumed by the RMS/RTA and stratum created. VG values don't show any appreciable difference in land values.

    1. There are 3 stratum lots to be created, two are to be retained by the RMS. The tunnel roadway will be about 33m below, it doesn't state how high the tunnel is or where this stratum finishes. The second stratum runs from 21m down to the top of the other stratum. Contact the Northconnex Information line for detailed information
    2. You don't need to do anything. Stratum subdivision creates new vertical lots restricted in height. The RMS stratums run from 21m down to below the tunnel. Your stratum runs down 21m and up to the sky.
    3. Visit the above site to check any impact - should be negligible.
    4. The road builder will be undertaking detailed geotech surveys and a dilapdation survey of the property to pick up on existing damage. If the property cracks during construction, they will be liable. Road borers should cause minimal disruption or vibration.
    5. What buyers can't see, can't hurt them or the price. In reality, price effects will be minimal for future sale.
    Uncertainty is your friend. If you understand what you are buying and discount it according to the level of uncertainty you can pick up a bargain.

    (I sold a site adjoining M2, Northwest Metro and construction service lane - rail tunnel was around 35m below the property - but I knew that).
     
  3. William W

    William W Member

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    Thanks for the quick and detailed reply.

    I checked on RPdata on 27,29,31 Somerset St and 57,59,61 Nortfolk Rd sale history and only managed to find a recent sale in 2009 for 57 Nortfolk road which went for a reasonable decent price. I had a further look at the section at Fraser Street Lane Cove North right above the Lane Cove tunnel. And i saw number 8 Fraser sold just 3 months ago for 1.5mil which i think is about the right price as well, and 10 Fraser was sold in 09 for decent price.

    So i guess the price impact is not too bad. The main worry for me now is just the vibration noise from beneath. I really hope 33 meters is enough.
     
  4. larrylarry

    larrylarry Well-Known Member

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    What's the reason for the sale?
     
  5. William W

    William W Member

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    Well, the agent says the owners are downsizing. But i'm sure tunnel would be a big reason
     
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  6. Scott No Mates

    Scott No Mates Well-Known Member

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    upload_2016-10-12_15-11-45.png

    @William W - this is directly over the tunnel. 65 Norfolk, few doors further up sold a few years later for $1,930,000 over a year later (40 m2 bigger block).
     
  7. William W

    William W Member

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    Thanks for the info again, strange RPdata doesn't have the 59 Norfolk info. 65 seems like a really nice house, i haven't looked at north epping but if that's somewhere 15-20 min walk to epping station i feel it would be 2.6-2.8ish nowadays.

    I guess house price shouldn't be affected too much, i mean the tunnel information is already on the contract now and the price at auction on Saturday should already reflect what people think. It's just i'm thinking it may turn buyers away in the future as me personally is thinking about it.


    Main worry is just i hope 33m is enough to block all vibration noises. I know Lane Cove tunnel is around average 25m under ground but unlike Lane Cove Tunnel, North Connex is designed for 5000 huge freight trucks a day.
     
  8. Scott No Mates

    Scott No Mates Well-Known Member

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    Who knows how many trucks will use the tunnel? Roads cause minimal vibration compared with rail but even then acoustic engineers will have worked on vibration dampening. Northconnex is deeper so there should be less vibration.

    The uncertainty should keep prices down by 10-15% than if it was unaffected by the works.
     
    Last edited: 12th Oct, 2016
  9. William W

    William W Member

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    Yeah, maybe more than 5000 a day.

    The suburb record in normanhurst is $2,055,000 at the moment and that was sold a few months back on the street next to the one I'm buying. But that house is 1700ish sqm land and already DA approved for 3 lots subdivision. This one is 1328sqm and it's just a single house but everything is done up. From the owner expectation I feel its either going to be close to the record or even go past the record.
     
  10. Scott No Mates

    Scott No Mates Well-Known Member

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    I worked out the house - very nice.

    If you haven't already checked - linky you're about 33 m to the top of the tunnel apparently.

    The uncertainty and disturbance will keep prices down, so don't worry about it being a street or suburb record even though it does present very well.
     
  11. William W

    William W Member

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    Cheers, yeah i saw the link. And i really hope i can get a discount on the house.

    I went to NorthConnex Centre just then for some info and the guy said they have drilled under more than 20 houses already and so far not a single complaint. And those houses are near the entrance of the tunnel with some only 5-8 meters above the tunnel.

    I'm planning to do a bit of door knocking this Friday prior to auction around the area and ask if those people have been affected by the drilling and blasting.

    Also another thing is according to their environmental report. Since the tunnel will be below the water table, the water is going to be pumped out continuously for the duration of tunneling (thus lowering the water table for the surrounding area). Once the tunnel is sealed, pumping stops and the water table will be allowed to return to normal levels. I wonder what will all those contraction and expansion do to the soil during a 2-3 years time.
     
  12. mikey7

    mikey7 Well-Known Member

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    Just make sure the ground hasn't opened up under that inground trampoline! :p
     
  13. larrylarry

    larrylarry Well-Known Member

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    I'd think of what the worst scenario is and how much it would cost. Worth the bargain?
     
  14. Scott No Mates

    Scott No Mates Well-Known Member

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    $200-300k discount due to uncertainty, still buys a nice lunch. ;)
     
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  15. William W

    William W Member

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    u think so? guess will see at the auction. if can get the house around 1.9 i guess the discount is there
     
  16. Stoffo

    Stoffo Well-Known Member

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    Without knowing where it is exactly (go @Scott No Mates for working it out)

    My only question would be : WHERE IS THE VENTILATION STACK in regard to your property ?
    TBH I have no idea if these stacks are sucking out the exhaust fumes, or forcing fresh air into the tunnel !

    That would be my only concern, because at 33mt you shouldn't notice the tunnel :D
     
  17. William W

    William W Member

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    The ventalation stack is around 2.8km away i think. I think they filter the air inside the tunnel
     
  18. Gockie

    Gockie I'm an ISTP-A female, so I might be a bit quirky! Premium Member

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    Gorgeous house!

    And re: houses on Norfolk Rd North Epping, I don't think any of them would have been price affected for being located above the tunnel. They have a nice outlook over the street to the oval and the houses on that street tend to be really gorgeous Federation homes.

    What can be affected though are houses that:
    1. Face the M2 sound barrier wall (really not nice visually, I would not buy that)
    2. Having the home looking like it's on a major roadway on maps can take away some buyers (but only those who really don't know the area well).
     
  19. bob shovel

    bob shovel Well-Known Member

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    Take advantage of that discount for sure. the street will feel the same as the rest of the street and your wallet will thank you :)

    Most of these road tunnels are down with TBM's tunnel boring machines. Do a Google on those. Basically a big spinning disc cutting into the rock, like walking into a wall with a pedestal fan :D you won't feel or hear anything above. ...I'd be more worried about the guys on the job! :eek: tunnelers are a special breed, they make butchers look like electricians :cool:
     
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  20. Scott No Mates

    Scott No Mates Well-Known Member

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    RMS don't install scrubbers or filters on its stacks.

    RMS advise that they don't work, apparently ;) Fumes from 5000 trucks/day at street level or at 20m - is there a difference? (About the same as the ocean outfalls for the Sydney sewer system).