Peter Cooper is a property developer who takes a long-term view. Mr Cooper’s Britomart precinct in downtown Auckland is a continuing project. The master plan for Britomart includes the refurbishment of 18 heritage buildings and the construction of seven environmentally friendly ones.
Although based in California, he still regularly visits New Zealand “about once a month,” Mr Cooper says.
Work began on restoring the heritage buildings in 2004 and nine have now been fully refurbished. On completion, it will be the largest heritage restoration project ever undertaken in New Zealand.
He says the current focus for the project is attracting fashion tenants and establishing another fashion area in the precinct, which should be completed by Christmas.
Recently, designers World, Zambesi and Kate Sylvester opened in the precinct and hair stylist Ryder is opening a new salon in the Charter House building on the corner of Customs St East and Britomart Place.
In 2008 Mr Cooper brought together his main trading organisations together under Cooper & Company, a company he founded in 1989.
Cooper & Company’s Southlake Town Centre residential and retail development in Fort Worth has been held out as an example of successful urban development.
The town centre is continuing to grow with residential and retail development.
Mr Cooper is a former director of Lion Nathan and his other business interests include property in the Bay of Islands and a partnership in a sport fishing charter vessel. A qualified lawyer, he practised for 11 years, specialising in commercial and property law as a partner at Auckland law firm Russell McVeagh.