Kilgariff blocks: $170,000 each to construct


This “road closed” sign will be consigned to history soon with the opening of the first part of Kilgariff, the suburb built by the NT Government’s Land Development Corporation because no private developer could be found.
And after years of horrendous land prices, climbing to more than $320,000 a block, the cost is an eye opener: the construction cost is $170,000 per block, and the corporation is selling at close to cost, says a spokesman.
In Stage 1A, 23 blocks have already been sold, for between $160,000 and $180,000 each. Stage 1B will provide a further 47 blocks.
The budget for the headworks, bringing power, water and sewerage services to the edge of the subdivision, covering Stages 1A and 1B, was $3.5m.
The corporation and its selling agents will be exhibiting at an expo arranged by the local Chamber of Commerce at Blatherskite Park on November 8.
Tradies and builders will tout their wares and services to home buyers benefitting from the lowest land prices the town has seen in years.
The development by the Land Development Corporation is not unlike the way land was “opened up” in the ’70s by the Commonwealth Government, prior to self government in the Territory.


  1. I haven’t quite been able to work out all of the road works to enter from both ends of the Stuart Highway.
    There are turning lanes to go into Kilgariff however those leaving the new suburb don’t have any such lane to merge into when they get onto the Stuart Highway.
    It is going to be a long wait to leave the suburb during peak times of plane arrivals and then to have anyone turning into the Cemetery entrance I can see people being stuck there for some time unless lights or perhaps another roundabout that we seem to love so much in Alice Springs are added later.
    Are these things ever really thought out properly in the very first instance or is this another waste of money having to fix something up after it has already supposedly “planned”.

  2. I have to question the value of these blocks. Paying $170,000 to $180,000 a block plus $300,000 for a house, money for fencing and garden put it out of reach of most people. Traveling cost to and from work for a family with partner and two children, on $65,000 average would be a struggle. On the lighter side you will need good foundations due to earthworks.

  3. Oh boy, this sure is a long from what I paid for my first block of land on the East Side in 1958. The 99 year lease it cost me 20 pounds and 15 of that was for the solicitor.
    A block on the Stuart Highway many years later was $4000 and the land on Lackman Terrace went for a song because no one wanted, it was too steep.
    How on earth can one pay that much for a block and build a house on it as well? When you are situated in the middle of an enormous landmass?

  4. It is ironic that further comment on Kilgarrif, a seminar and sudden recognition of the Chinese need for protein has all happebned simultaneously.
    This has been common knowledge in the big investment end of town for at least four years but ignored by government here.
    Witness the food security conference in Sydney last year and several WFO reports. China alone will need one million tonnes of protein a year, 800,000 tones of other food matter.
    There have been frequent warnings that we will all have to produce more from less resources, with CSIRO’s Simon McKean stating that he could find no better investment than in food production.
    And that FROM a very successful investment banker, yet ignored here.
    Forbes Investment mag in NY said the samwe thing. Again ignored here. This government chose instead to put its blinkers on and build houses on what sdhould bne the ultimate in dry land research to meet those demands.
    There has been a world wide search for ferttiliser for the same reason by major firms with foresight wanting to take commerccial oportunities.
    Kilgariff was political pork barrelling at its best. Three days before the last election the Henderson government offered $10m for infrastructure. Since then the current government has put in another several million – so where the figure quoted by the Land Corporation came from sounds like more spin.
    The cost of those houses will be very large, the brunt of it being born by the pastoral industry through lack of the necesssary research at government level to increase their productivity by pastuere improvement as has been done in every other state.
    So far as houses and land is concerned I can land a very nice 4 BR house here from Adelaide for well under 200K.
    In the meantime WA and Twiggy Forrest are taking cattle from here (18,000 in a recent ABC report) having seen the possibilities, and adding value to them, and will be sending them off to China.
    That should have and could have happened here via Kilgarif research. India for example is upgrading our Acacias, using them to fatten their cattle and get in in front of us, and South American interests are laughing.
    If I had pastoral interests here I would be up in arms confronting government on this because our pastoral industry has been disadvantaged.
    So also other rural industries. Arabian interests have recently puchased a chain of dairies in the US to produce camel milk.
    This is a multi billion market and camel milk sells here for around $10 a litre. Yet attempts to start such here have met with a wall of red tape. There are at least 2 people still trying, but the development of this and other like food production industries should have been done at ASRI to attract capital investment.
    If they can’t see it, how do the investors such as Brett Blundy know? When I put this to the minister he referred me to Paddy’s Plain. Where is that? Are there pasture inmprovement trials there? Weight gain on our pastures?
    The US is researching the efffects of climate change on desituous stone fruit, which is in serious decline here. We could take advantage of that as with so many othwer things like it, but they need intensive research, not suburban look alike houses.
    That whole area from the airport to the Gap should have been a vibrant display of all that can be done here to attract investment and therefore employment, not just for Alice but the whole of the NT.
    Short-sighted would have to be an understatement as this government has failed to open its eyes to what is happening elsewhere, in favour of short term political expediency.


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