Newly elected board member Denise Roche was sworn in at the board’s business meeting on 20 March. (photo left)
Consultation on the 10 year budget
Have your say month wrapped up on 28 March. The Board hosted 2 public meetings, a hearings style meeting where 19 groups and individuals presented and four drop-in session at our libraries (photo right: Parnell Have your say public meeting attended by board members and councillors Penny Hulse and Christine Fletcher). Spray free parks is one of the priority issues that was consulted on by the Board (Attachment 1)
A summary of the consultation feedback will be available in May.
New public space at the Viaduct
In October 2017 I reported that Panuku had made the decision to close the Eastern Viaduct car park to create a new public space in line with the Waterfront Plan. This followed advocacy from the local board and councillors Richard Hills and Chris Darby.
Following the space being used increasingly for temporary events it has now been permanently closed. I attended the karakia on 26 March led by Ngāti Whātua Ōrākei to acknowledge the closing of the Eastern Viaduct as a car park and the commencement of the construction and installation process of a public space.
Over the Easter break I enjoyed having lunch with a friend at the new communal table (photo above). See Attachment 2 for more details.
Chronic levels of homelessness in the city centre is a major concern. The board wishes to support solutions and is looking to provide appropriate public facilities (one of the priorities we highlighted in the recent 10 year budget consultation).
I attended the Heart of the City organised “ending homelessness” event on 20 March at the Ellen Melville Centre to hear the latest update from Moira Lawler, CEO of Lifewise, and Chris Farrelly, the Auckland City Missioner on how they are working to end homelessness in central Auckland.
They talked about the collaborative approach underway, including Housing First and the redevelopment of James Liston Hostel and the recently announced Mission Homeground (incorporating accommodation and wrap round services) to be developed on the Mission’s Hobson St site.
Western Springs Native bush restoration project
Residents were recently provided with an update (Attachment 3) on the Western Springs Native bush restoration project. Attachment 4 the Our Auckland story on the project. In addition, Deputy Chair Shale Chambers spokesperson for the project has provided this update on 10 April via Facebook in response to concerns about the process.
The elected members of the board do not, nor have they in the past, had any direct involvement in the selective cutting of the pine trees. This has been a decision of arborists and Council parks staff who are making health and safety decisions to keep the track and park area open, and keep property and lives safe. No assurance can be given that those decisions, where necessary will not be made in the future (for example, as a result of today’s winds) but this will only be done for genuine health and safety reasons, not any early implementation of the plans. That is in line with the local board’s advice that the trees are failing at an increased rate. The restoration project is shortly to go to a notified public hearing process. Those who wish to question the reports and advice that the local board has relied on in making its decision, in its view in the public interest, to proceed with the restoration project and the removal of the remaining 200 pines will have their opportunity there to have their say. The board will be bound by the outcome. The ‘consultation’ is therefore a publicly notified resource consent hearings process available to all interested in the outcome of the plans. We invite and welcome that involvement. Council advice can be tested there. If it is correct and the project is granted consent, the first stage pine removal phase of the project will proceed. Locals and interested parties will then be involved by way of consultation on in the detail post-pines future of the area and the park restoration project, as promised.
Victoria Quarter Petition
At the Board’s March business meeting we received a petition presented by Emily Reeves, city centre resident, calling for safer pedestrian access in Victoria Quarter. (Attachment 5)
We passed a resolution requesting staff to refer the petition to the Development Programme Office for consideration in the allocation of the targeted rates projects in the Victoria Quarter and Auckland Transport for consideration for improvements in the road corridor.
Work is already underway by Auckland Transport on significant safety treatments in the Cook St off ramp area of Victoria Quarter. The proposals will go out for consultation shortly.
Great North Road – car transporters
I’ve previously reported on the issue of car transporters illegally unloading on Great North Road. This high risk activity continues despite AT regularly issuing fines (this is just considered a cost of doing business).
I’ve met with AT’s manager of parking who is calling a meeting of operators and NZTA to discuss the options available for increasing the number of loading zones and for businesses to undertake more activities within their premises. If car transporter operators continue to unload illegally NZTA has the power to revoke operator licences.
The board has asked Auckland Transport to look at options for further greening Quay St as part of the cycleway design.
At our March meeting we requested Auckland Transport to develop a rough order of cost for including a green bus shelter roof as part of the Quay Street project to be funded from the Local Board Transport Capital Fund (photo above right: cycleway under construction showing inclusion of a strip in the design for planting)
March was a big month for events in Waitematā. Pop, the Board funded annual series of interactive art projects is now a fixture of the Auckland International Arts Festival (photo right pop marbles in Freyberg Place).
At Pasifika the mayoral and government’s entourages joined forces for the first time to visit stages in nine of the villages. (Photo below: At the Tuvalu village with Fala Haulangi)
Meetings and workshops: 14 March until 10 April 2018
- Weekly chair’s meeting held every Monday with the local board services team
- Site visit on 14 March to berm on Beresford Street where poisoning has taken place (photo right)
- Meeting with the Newton Residents Association representatives on 14 March
- Fortnightly meeting with comms adviser on 14 and 29 March
- Dropped by the Auckland Transport Karangahape Road parking plan consultation open days on 14 and 16 March
- Meeting with Parnell Business Association representatives on 15 March
- Have your say Grey Lynn Library drop in session on 15 March
- Have your say Parnell public meeting hosted in partnership with Parnell Community Committee on 15 March
- Have your say Leys Institute Library drop in session on 16 March
- Surrey Cres/Garnet Road Community Liaison Group meeting hosted by Auckland Transport on 19 March
- Have your say cuppa with Splice at Ellen Melville Centre attended by inner city resents particularly new migrants (supported by Auckland Council translator).
- Waitematā Local Board business meeting on 20 March
- Auckland Transport’s quarterly briefing for Local Boards on 21 March
- Drop in session on 21 March for elected representatives at Albert St re: Sale and supply of Alcohol Renewal of Licences Amendment Bill (No2)
- Participated in Auckland Transport’s consultations sprint at Customer Central (exploring AT’s end to end consultations process from the customer lens) with a face to face interview on 21 March
- Local Economic Development Masterclass; Supporting economic resilience hosted by ATEED at GridAKL on 22 March
- Have your say Waitematā Local Board hearing on 22 March. The Board received 19 presentations from a range of groups and individuals
- Briefing from Housing NZ representatives on 23 March re the redevelopment plans for 139 Greys Ave
- Hui on 23 March between Local Board Chairs and the Chair of the Tūpuna Maunga Authority and to discuss some activities planned for 2018 by the Tūpuna Maunga Authority.
- Have your say Central Library drop in session on 23 March
- Have your say Parnell Library drop in session on 26 March (photo right)
- Parnell Plan working group meeting on 26 March
- Board all day workshops on 27 March, 3 and 10 April
- Catch up with KBA general manager on 28 March
- Wynyard Quarter Transport Association board meeting on 28 March
- Joint governing body and local board chairs workshop on 28 March
- Relationship Manager catchup on 29 March
- Monthly transport portfolio catch up on 4 April
- Meeting with Manager, AT parking on 4 April
- Meeting on 5 April with representatives of the Parnell Business Association to discuss Paws in Parnell event debrief
- Catch up with CEO, MOTAT on 6 April
- Meeting on 6 April with KBA and NZPC to discuss public facilities on Karangahape Road
- Ponsonby Business Association committee meeting held on 10 April
Events and functions: 14 March until 10 April 2018
- Grey Lynn 2030 AGM and Green Screen showing of Living Dangerously on 19 March
- Ending Homelessness in Auckland’s city centre organised by Heart of the City at Ellen Melville Centre on 20 March
- Far Side of the Moon at the Aotea Centre on 22 March at the invitation of the Auckland Arts Festival
- Pasifika Festival walkabout with the Prime Minister and the Mayor
- Government’s Unitec Housing announcement at Te Noho Kotahitanga Marae on 25 March (photo right)
- Karakia on 26 March led by Ngāti Whātua Ōrākei to acknowledge the closing of the Eastern Viaduct as a car park and the commencement of the construction and installation process of a public space.
- YMCA – Ride and Refresh Launch Event on 27 March (new service providing showers and secure parking for bike commuters) Photo right
- Women in Urbanism discussion with NZTA on 28 March
- Part of the official party for the Citizenship Ceremony in the Town Hall on 3 April
Bike Breakfast on 5 April at Bestie café sponsored by KBA
- Opening of the Uptown Business Association movie night in Basque Park on 7 April
- Jam on Toast at the Grey Lynn Community Centre on 8 April
- Opening of the Auckland International Cultural Festival at Mt Roskill War Memorial Park on 8 April
- Attended the Road Safety Summit in Wellington on 9 April and gave a presentation on Auckland’s road safety crisis as part of a panel discussion on Local Government’s view about what more can be done to improve road safety (Attachment 6).