Chair’s monthly report September 2018

This report covers the period 15 August until 11 September 2018 including the start of Te Wiki o te Reo Māori 10 – 16 Mahuru.

 Ko te reo te taikura ō te whakaaro marama
Language is the key to understanding

He pai ake te iti i te kore
A little is better than none


Waitematā Local Board August business meeting

At our monthly board meetings, we are fortunate to welcome a range of presenters to an often lively and interesting public forum.  Our August business meeting was especially well attended with presentations from:

  • John Elliott – Non-toxic non-herbicidal spray method
  • Elizabeth Walker and Sel Arbuckle of STEPS – Western Springs plantings on lava flow forest
  • Caitlin McIlhagga General Manager 95bFM – Presentation about 95bFM does and how it is involved with the community (photo right)
  • Jennifer Ward, Chris Bailey and Paula Wilkinson of Community- Led Design Group – 254 Ponsonby Road
  • Chris O’Brien, Chairman Laura Fergusson Trust; Rob Small -Trustee Laura Fergusson Trust and Simon Wilson, Managing Director Heineken Urban Polo – Heineken Urban Polo Tournament
  • Example of an urban tree that was felled following the removal of tree protection rules

    Graeme Easte, Albert-Eden Local Board Member – Meola Creek Catchment Update

Minutes are available on the Auckland Council website.

2006 – 2015 Urban Forest Canopy Changes in the Waitematā Local Board area

Last term the board initiated LiDAR (Light Detection and Ranging) mapping to understand changes in the urban tree canopy. It has taken some time for the results to be presented due to a number of technical challenges.  At our August meeting we received the draft ‘Tree loss in the Waitematā Local Board over ten years (2006 – 2015)’ report funded as part of the Waitematā Local Board’s 2017/2018 urban forest framework project

The report highlights that the amount of tree loss in the Waitematā Local Board area 2006-2015 is 61.23 hectares (approximately 17 per cent) and that 65 per cent of the urban forest clearance has occurred on private land. This does not include the growth of new,canopy. Further analysis work is underway and will be the subject of a subsequent report.

A significant part of the tree loss has been caused by the removal by the former central government of Council’s general tree protection rules so we urge the Governing Body to advocate to government to change the law to enable Auckland Council to reintroduce general tree protection rules.

 Western Springs Lakeside Park Development Plan consultation

 A draft park development plan for Western Springs Te Wai Ōrea Lakeside Park was out for consultation until the end of August.

The Board held an open day at the park playground on 18 August (photo right Deputy Chair Shale Chambers and member Adriana Christie with local resident Chuck Joseph).  A number of people gave feedback not just about the park plan but about concerns over current maintenance issues.

I logged these issues and in response received the following updates:

  • Bird numbers no longer managed – unfortunately we missed the opportunity last Spring to train our contractors in conjunction with the Zoo hence the rise in bird numbers this year. We are now working with our contractors and the zoo and will undertake the seasonal addling of the eggs this Spring.
  • Paths no longer swept – all bird poo washed into the Lake – Paths are blown and water blasted once a week and are contractors are aware that bird faeces should not be washing into the lake. We have reiterated this with our contractor and we have increased the frequency of water blasting to 3 x a week as of Tuesday this week.
  • Broken drinking fountains – There are a couple of water fountains that have no active water pipe feeding it due to them being broken by tree roots coming up through the concrete. These have not been working for a number of years and this will be addressed as part of the Western Park project works.
  • Broken toilets at the playground with dirty Portaloo replacements – The zoo is constructing a new administration building on the site of a previous building that has been removed. Unfortunately, when the Zoo staff began work it was discovered that the western spring toilet had been connected to this facilities waste water line. This was unknown to the zoo project team and was not recorded on any plans so reinstatement of the sewer line was included in the design for the new building. Community Facilities are working with the zoo project team and have devised a methodology for a new connection, so we can recommission the toilets. Whilst the work may not be expensive it is complex given the significant amount of volcanic rock and protected trees along the pathway for a new connection.  The new work will require a consent and arborist approval before works can commence. We hope to have the toilets reinstated before the summer season starts.
  • In the interim alternative facilities are provided and these are cleaned twice daily with the expectation this meets the same outcome as permanent toilets by way of cleanliness. If this is found not to be the case a request for service can be called through and our contractor will attend.
  • Broken light in toilet block in park – disconnected due to the works going on at the Zoo.

We also received positive feedback from “Friends of Fukuoka Gardens” community group who have been working directly with contractors to improve maintenance of the Japanese garden.

It is proposed that issues such as water quality and bird feeding will be addressed through the plan.

Salisbury Reserve consultation and removal of the Masonic Lodge

Land purchased to create an entrance way to Salisbury Reserve

Consultation on the two options for opening up the entrance to Salisbury Reserve ended at the end of August.  During the month I met on site with both local residents and representatives of the Herne Bay Residents Association.  I confirmed that the local board doesn’t intend revisiting the decision to remove the Masonic Lodge building for a number of reasons:

  • We don’t have a budget to upgrade it, to cover operational costs nor to pay for a change to the required resource consent (which will be opposed by local residents).
  • There is no evidence of a need for another community facility serving Herne Bay.
  • Current facilities including Leys Institute Hall and the Vermont Centre are not at capacity. I also provided the occupancy stats below of local facilities that directly report to Council.
  • The reserve is not large enough to support two community facilities.
  • There are minimal heritage values associated with the building as it has been through so many alterations.

The standard available hours in 10h/day and the percentages below is based on the standard.

Utilisation                                                 FY16/17           FY17/18

Leys Institute Hall                                             16%                 20%

Freemans Bay Community Hall                    38%                 39%

Grey Lynn Community Centre                       55%                 53%

Ponsonby Community Centre                         37%                  36%

Leys Institute Gym                                            59%                  57%

Central City Library opening hours
The board made funding available so the Auckland Central City Library can open for an extra hour on Saturdays and Sundays from September 1. Funding is guaranteed until 30 June 2019.


John Street, Ponsonby – a trial for a new “healthy streets” approach

As a narrow street and rat run John Street in Ponsonby has suffered from a number of parking, traffic and safety issues going back some time.  The transport portfolio has been following up with a group of residents who would like to be part of the solution.  They are keen for John St to be used to showcase AT’s new approach to safer, healthier streets which are designed for all road users not just cars.

On 18 August I met with residents on the street to discuss potential options. I confirmed that the Local Board is pushing AT to use all the tools available to improve the conditions of John Street. AT is currently preparing a proposal for consultation.

Grey Lynn Parking

The local board passed the following resolution at our business meeting on 21 August in response to the parking concerns that have been raised with us in response to a letter drop to 600 Grey Lynn households opposing a proposed time restricted parking zone.

MOVED by Chairperson P Coom, seconded by Deputy Chairperson S Chambers:

That the Waitematā Local Board:

  1. receive the Auckland Transport August 2018 update report
  2. request Auckland Transport to implement the proposed new Arch Hill and Grey Lynn residential parking zone as soon as reasonably practicable and put on hold the proposed implementation of the time restricted P120 zone that has not been consulted on until after an assessment has been made of the impact of the residential parking zone
  3. request Auckland Transport work with the Grey Lynn Residents Association to identify suitable locations for P120 restrictions.

In response to the resolution AT has confirmed that the RPZ implementation will be brought forward to December and they will put on hold the time restricted parking.  Further details are on the Auckland Transport website.

Waitematā Safer Routes

Concept design for West Lynn, Richmond Road

New designs prepared by Boffa Miskell to fix the issues on the two Waitematā Safer routes were presented to Community Liaison Groups (CLGs) on 5 September.  A few days later the NZ Herald reported that the Grey Lynn cycleway debacle could cost $35m to fix and claimed that the project was for a few “existing cyclists”.   Grey Lynn Business Association co-chair Irene King was reported as saying that preliminary designs as “very, very stunning” with beautiful urban design and landscaping.

There is a lot that Auckland Transport has got wrong with this project and it should have been done correctly first time (I have previously reported on the background and what went wrong) but it is far is more accurate to describe the project as a street upgrade as it covers a safety improvements for everyone, bus stop changes, bus stop changes, traffic lights, parking, stormwater, landscaping and new trees.  Auckland Transport has also confirmed the figure of $35m is incorrect and should not have been presented to the CLG.   The actual projected cost for this project sits between $17m-$22m at present. AT has explained the figure of $35m was an initial costing that had long since been refined but was unfortunately inserted into the presentations to the CLGs and wasn’t caught until it was too late.

Auckland Transport plans to take the proposals out for consultation in Novembers so the wider community can decide what should be prioritised within the available budget.

Road Safety

My latest Ponsonby News column covers the 9th anniversary of speed reduction on Ponsonby Road and the speed bylaw proposals that are shortly to go out for consultation (Attachment 1).  Deaths and Serious injuries (DSi) across Auckland have increased by 67% since 2013.  In Waitematā 77% of all DSi involved vulnerable road users, people walking or cycling. This is the highest percentage among all Local Boards.

I was really pleased to see Auckland Transport’s CEO strong leadership and uncompromising statement on safer speeds in a letter to NZ Herald on 10 September (right).

On 5 September I attended a business strategy workshop in Wellington as a committee member of Trafinz.  The New Zealand Local Authority Traffic Institute or Trafinz represents local authority views on road safety and traffic management in New Zealand. It exists to lobby the government, to influence decision making on road safety and traffic issues. It also acts as a forum for collectively pursuing traffic issues of interest to local authorities, and for sharing information and advice.

Trafinz is actively involved in the development of a new road safety strategy with a Vision Zero target.

Meetings and workshops: 15 August until 11 September 2018

  • Meeting with local residents on 15 August at the Masonic Hall regarding the Salisbury Reserve consultation
  • Auckland Paths working group meeting on 16 August
  • Meeting with Steve Mutton, Director Regional Relationships on 17 August
  • Met with John Street, Ponsonby residents on 18 August to discuss options to traffic calm and reduce volumes
  • Attended the Western Springs Development Plan consultation event held at the park on 18 August
  • Chair’s weekly meeting with the local board services team on 20, 27 August and 3 and 10 September
  • Waitematā Local Board business meeting on 21 August
  • LGNZ Zone 1 meeting on 24 August in Manukau
  • Spoke to Citizens Advice Bureau Grey Lynn/Ponsonby Branch volunteers on 27 August about the role of the local board
  • Board all day workshops on 28 August and 4, 11 September
  • Wynyard Quarter Transport Management Association meeting on 29 August
  • Meeting with Jeremy Hansen, Britomart Group on 29 August
  • Attended a Vision Zero meeting organised by Bike Auckland at Bizdojo on 29 August
  • Meeting with representatives of the Herne Bay Residents Association on 29 August the Masonic Hall regarding the Salisbury Reserve consultation
  • Interviewed by Grant Hewison regarding the Ponsonby Business Association strategic plan on 29 August
  • Auckland Domain Committee workshop followed by the public committee meeting on 30 August
  • Inclusive governance in a diverse Auckland workshop offered by the Kura Kawana Elected Member Development Programme with guest speaker Professor Paul Spoonley, Pro Vice-Chancellor – College of Humanities and Social Sciences, Massey University on 31 August
  • Kia whai whare atou katoa: Regional, cross-sectoral homelessness plan for Auckland workshop at the Fickling Centre on 3 September (photo right)
  • Meeting on 4 September with the Community–led Design Group to discuss 254 Ponsonby Road in preparation for the forthcoming Options Paper.
  • TRAFINZ workshop in Wellington on 5 September
  • Visit to Auckland Zoo for local board members on 6 September (photo right)
  • Catch up with City Centre Residents Group representative on 6 September
  • Transport portfolio catch up on 7 September
  • Meeting with Director Regulatory Services Penny Pirrit to discuss compliance issues at the helicopter boat shed construction on Sentinel Beach, Herne Bay
  • Attended the “Business Grey Lynn” organised community meeting at St Columba church on 9 September regarding the Representation Review consultation that closed on 11 September
  • Local Board Chairs’ Forum on 10 September
  • Ponsonby Business Association committee meeting on 11 September
  • Briefing by Heart of the City regarding their street guardians initiative

Events and functions:  15 August until 11 September 2018

  • Interview on 95 BfM on 15 August to discuss the development of green spaces
  • Opening night of Auckland Theatre Company’s Filthy Business at ASB waterfront Theatre on 16 August at the invite of ATC
  • Dropped by 95bFM: Drive Island w/ Ha the Unclear & Skilaa at Ellen Melville Centre on 17 August (photo right)
  • Walters Prize opening at Auckland Art Gallery on 17 August
  • Panel member with MP Deborah Russell and former MP Damien Fenton at the Central Auckland Labour LEC’s Locally Left event at the Grey Lynn RSC on 27 August (photo below)
  • Opening of the Mina and Courtney Pellow NZFW show pop up shop on 30 August at the invite of the K’Road Business Association (photo right)
  • Living Wage Employer celebration held at the Ellen Melville Centre on 3 September (photo below)
  • “Into the Underworld” exhibition opening on 8 September in Silo 6, Wynyard Quarter.
  • Officiated at the Town Hall citizenship ceremony on 11 September.

Chair’s monthly report August 2018

This report covers the period 15 July until 14 August 2018.


Western Springs Development Plan consultation
A draft park development plan for Western Springs Te Wai Ōrea Lakeside Park has been released for public feedback.
The vision outlined in the draft plan for the park includes improved water quality in the lake and streams, connecting the surrounding areas via paths, and improvements to event infrastructure. The focus of the plan is on improving the existing state of a well-loved park without making major changes.
Consultation is open until 27 August.

Salisbury Reserve consultation

Land purchased to create an entrance way to Salisbury Reserve

12 Argyle Street, Herne Bay was purchased by the former Auckland City Council to improve the entrance to Salisbury Reserve. There are two draft options out for consultation. In both options the pathways into the reserve are improved with additional lawn and trees. The main difference between the options is whether or not to provide car parking on the reserve. We want to ensure the community can consider the best use of valuable green space. The old Masonic Hall on the site will be removed with as much of the building material recycled as possible. For a number of reasons (outlined in a post here) it wasn’t possible to retain the hall, but we have committed to improving the clubrooms that are in the reserve and making them more user friendly (the clubrooms are leased to the Herne Bay Petanque Club, but available to hire). There is $25,000 in the budget for the coming financial year to refurbish the bathrooms on top of other renewal work that has recently taken place.
Consultation on the two options has been extended until 30 August.

Teed Street upgrade celebration

On 18 July we celebrated the Teed Street upgrade with the Newmarket Business Association and local retailers. It was an opportunity to acknowledge everyone who had worked on the project and to bless the new art work commissioned for the upgrade by Ray Haydon. Our Auckland story and more photos here.

New art work in the City Centre

Light Weight O by artist Catherine Griffiths which is hanging between 1925 heritage buildings the Royal Exchange and Administrator House was opened on 1 August. Member Richard Northey gave a speech on behalf of the Local Board.
The work was commissioned as part of the O’Connell St laneway upgrade and was funded through the regional public art budget and city centre targeted rate.

LGNZ conference in Christchurch 15 – 17 July

I attended the annual LGNZ Conference in Christchurch 15 – 17 July as a National Councilmember and local board representative. For the conference I facilitated one of the workshops on Climate Change. I was also one of Auckland Council’s four delegates to the AGM held on 15 July. My conference report back will be tabled at the business meeting on 21 August.

Agrichemical-free parks

A number of parks within the Waitematā Local Board area are going agri-chemical free. The first parks to benefit will be Albert, Western and Myers, with the non-sports sections of Victoria Park also included.

More than $70,000 has been allocated to the initiative, which comes in response to public feedback during the Local Board Plan and Local Board Long-term Plan consultation processes. Our Auckland story with more details here

Waitematā funded or supported projects underway or completed

Parking updates
Thanks to the efforts of the Parnell Business Association and Parnell Community Committee Auckland Transport has agreed to fast track the implementation of the proposed changes. There are still a number of issues to resolve regarding how the current scheme is working for local residents.
In Grey Lynn Auckland Transport is planning on installing signage for the Residential parking zone by December with go live in February or March. However, concerns have been raised with me regarding AT’s proposal to introduce a time restricted parking zone that was not previously been consulted on.

On College Hill following consultation Auckland Transport will now proceed using a graduated rate structure which will charge $1/hour for the first 2 hours and $2/hour for subsequent hours. The rate structure will align with recent changes to on-street parking along Ponsonby Road and while it will have minimal impact on short-term parking utilised by customers and visitors, Auckland Transport expects that it will encourage parking availability.
Further details are on the Auckland Transport website.

New network bus changes
On 8 July Auckland Transport launched a new bus network for Auckland’s central suburbs. Most services have changed, including bus routes, route numbers, timetables and some bus stops. In the Waitematā area the changes appear to be working smoothly with a few exceptions. I have received complaints regarding the removal of services from Williamson Ave (this is also subject to a local petition), removal of a service to Herne Bay from downtown and the fact the Westmere service stops just short of the shops. Auckland Transport has advised that there will be review of the New network operations after 6 months.

Meetings and workshops: 15 July until 14 August 2018

  • LGNZ National Council meeting on 15 July
  • LGNZ AGM on 15 July
  • LGNZ Conference in Christchurch 15 – 17 July
  • Waitematā Local Board business meeting on 17 July
  • Catch up meeting with Local Board services team on 18 July
  • City Centre Advisory Board meeting on 18 July (as alternate to Deputy Chair Shale Chambers)
  • Board all day workshops on 24 and 31 July and 7 and 14 August
  • Chair’s weekly meeting with the local board services team on 23 and 30 July and 13 August (in our workshop on 23 July we received an update on accountability reports submitted from groups who had received community grants – Attachment 5)
  • Meeting to discuss achievements report on 23 July
  • Comms meetings on 23 July and 2 August
  • Transport portfolio catch up on 24 July
  • Wynyard Quarter Transport Management Association meeting on 24 July
  • Joint Governing Body / Local Board Chairs Meeting on 24 July
  • Meeting with members of the Consulate of the Republic of Korea in Auckland to discuss K-Pop Dance workshops during Mental Health Awareness week
  • Relationship manager monthly meeting on 26 July
  • Newmarket Business Association board meeting on 26 July (as alternate for member Rob Thomas)
  • Housing NZ bi-monthly meeting on 26 July
  • Meeting with representatives from Summerset Parnell development on 27 July
  • Meeting with participants of the Smart Seeds challenge
  • Parnell Plan working group meeting on 30 July
  • NZTA scene setting briefing for Councillors and Local Board chairs re Auckland’s light rail projects on 1 August
  • Meeting with representatives of the National Butterfly Centre project on 2 August
  • Local Board Resource Consent and Planning workshop on 6 August covering the resource consent and planning lead role covering:
     the Auckland Unitary Plan
     developing effective local board feedback for notified resource consents, plan changes and notices of requirement
     presenting feedback at a hearing
  • Auckland Cricket and Grafton Cricket Club introductory meeting on 7 August to discuss their strategic plans and upcoming events
  • Meeting with Auckland Transport to discuss options for traffic management improvements at Newton School
  • Parnell Business Association annual presentation to the local board on 9 August
  • Community Liaison Group meeting on 9 August for the Pt Chev/Meola Road cycleway project held at Pt Chev School.
  • Drop in session for the Facility Partnerships Policy Project consultation held at Ellen Melville Centre on 10 August
  • Local Board Chairs’ Forum on 13 August

Events and functions: 15 July until 14 August 2018

  • Teed Street upgrade celebration on 18 July
  • How We Win Change: A Bike Auckland presentation with Paul Steely White at Mason Bros building on 19 July
    How to be a Voice for Change: Towards Safer Streets for Auckland workshop with Paul Steely White hosted by Bike Auckland at Ellen Melville Centre on 21 July
  • InMotion Matariki all-wheels illuminated parade 2018 Hosted by Touch Compass Dance Trust on 21 July
  • Officiated at the Town Hall citizenship ceremony on 23 July
  • Attended the Campaign for Better Transport AGM with a presentation by AT CEO Shane Ellison
  • Attended the 2Walk and Cycle conference dinner on 31 July in Palmerston North for the Bike to the Future Awards at the invitation of NZTA (I was one of the judges for the awards)
  • Morning tea with Grey Lynn library staff on 2 August (photo bottom)
  • Auckland Conversations – Healthy Streets for Auckland presentation by Lucy Saunders and panel discussion at the Viaduct Events Centre on 2 August (photo right)
  • AT Cycling & Walking, Women in Urbanism and Boffa Miskell hosted presentation by Lucy Saunders at Boffa Miskell on 3 August
  • Opening night of HIR on 3 August at Herald Theatre at the invitation of Silo Theatre
  • Wynyard Quarter 7th birthday celebration on 4 August
  • Opening on 7 August of Moana, a large- scale mural painting by Ahota’e’iloa Toetu’u at the South British Insurance Company Limited Building (photo right of the artist and Paul Baragwanath who commissioned the art work)
  • Street Talks: Urban Japan: Lost in Translation? presentation hosted by the Chartered Institute of Logistics and Transport, ARUP and the Auckland Design Office at Auckland Central Library on 8 August
  • Presented on Local Board funding and advocacy to the Bike Auckland “Bike Burbs” hui held at Ellen Melville Centre on 11 August
  • Afternoon tea at the Grey Lynn Community Centre to celebrate the completion of the Re-purpose trial project by Grey Lynn 2030 and Earth Action Trust
  • Newmarket Business Association “State of the Nation” in Newmarket update at Event Cinema Broadway on 14 August followed by the movie “The Book Club” with ice cream and popcorn at the invitation of NBA.

Chair’s monthly report December 2017

Report covering the period 8 November until 12 December 2017.

Local board members present Tim Coffey with a Good Citizens Award

This is my final report for the year and the end of my first year as Chair.  I’d like to take this opportunity to thank my fellow board members, the Local Board services team and everyone who works to make Waitemata a great place. Our Achievements Report 16/17 really highlights the diversity of the board’s responsibilities and how we can make a difference locally when we respond to and partner with the community.

It has been a challenging but rewarding year. The new way of working introduced this term which focuses on the board’s work programme has limited the role of portfolios and made it more difficult for board members to effectively keep on top of project delivery (this will be reviewed in the new year). Internal restructuring and the changeover to a new maintenance contract in July has resulted in far more complaints to the board. In October the only Auckland Future member of the board resigned forcing a by-election to be held in February 2018.  The year is coming to an end with the cycleway programme in the spotlight and robust discussion about how Auckland Transport delivers on local priorities (this is covered in detail in Attachment 1).

On 14th December we are launching the Waitematā Local Board plan which sets our three-year direction. Consultation in May and June this year guided development of the plan and confirmed strong support for the direction of the Board.  At the December business meeting we are confirming budget priorities for 2018/19. These priorities will be extensively consulted on as part of the 10 year budget consultation starting on 28 February 2018

Achievements Report 1 July 2016 – 30 June 2017

 The Board’s annual report of highlights covering major projects and initiatives, community grants, advocacy and local governance is now available online.

The report overlaps with the last term so provides a good opportunity to acknowledge the work of former board members and Chair, Shale Chambers who originally kicked off the annual record of achievements.

 Waitemata Safe Routes Projects- update

In Attachment 1 I provide an update on two of the inner west walking and cycling projects that have created a great deal of controversy and scrutiny of Auckland Transport’s engagement and delivery practices.  This has provided an opportunity to reflect on the board’s role through the process.

As covered in the update the board is actively working with Auckland Transport on the solutions and agreed process for further consultation.

Teed Street upgrade

 The now complete Teed Street upgrade as featured in Paperboy

 Domain Committee

 There has been a long standing issue in the Domain of drivers parking on the grass.  Currently Auckland Transport does not have enforcement power to prohibit parking on areas of the Domain outside of formed roads.

At the Domain Committee meeting on 30 November we resolved to delegate the authority that Auckland Transport needs to enforce the no parking on the grass signage.

Prior to the Committee meeting members were led on a site visit around the southern area of Auckland museum where construction on a new pathway is about to start (photo right).  We also observed the significant amount of commuter parking in this area.

Currently a parking survey is underway with recommendations planned to come to our February meeting regarding options for effective parking management that will potentially open the way to freeing up far more on road space for visitors to the Domain.  It has long been my goal, now supported by the outcomes in the Domain Masterplan, to greatly improve accessibility, connectively and mobility in our premier park.

Vision Zero and report back from TRAFINZ conference

 The Waitematā Local Board has led the way supporting Vision Zero, the philosophy that has, as its bottom line, the principle that no deaths or serious injuries on the roads are acceptable.

In order to further the implementation of Vision Zero I attended the Trafinz conference in Nelson and have joined the Trafinz Executive Committee. (Trafinz represents local authority views on road safety and traffic management in New Zealand).  My report from the conference is attached (Attachment 2)

Dr Matts Ake Belin was the guest speaker at the Trafinz conference and guest of Auckland Conversations. The timing of his visit coincided the new Minister of Transport and Associate Minister announcing strong support for a new approach to road safety at time of a rising road toll.

Photo: Stand for Zero organised by Brake road safety charity to commemorate World Day of Remembrance for Road Traffic Victims

Parking consultations

The roll out of residential parking zones in the city fringe suburbs continues with the support of the board.  Auckland Transport’s consultation on Parnell parking improvements has just ended. The Grey Lynn and Arch Hill Residential Parking Zones consultation ends on 20 December.  The Board will consider the public feedback before providing our input in the new year.


The year ended with a huge number of events supported the Local Board including the Grey Lynn Park Festival, Santa Parade, West End Tennis Tournament, and Franklin Road Christmas Lights.  We also successfully held the Parnell Festival of Roses for the 24th year. The Festival has developed as an exemplar for Zero Waste management and accessibility.

It was an honour to open the new exhibition Changing Gear at MOTAT on 8 December. There is a lot to celebrate about cycling in Aotearoa. However very much on my mind in giving my speech was the most recent rider to needlessly lose their life only the night before. (Speech at the opening Attachment 3)

Meetings and workshops: 8 November until 12 December

  • Weekly Chair’s meeting with the Local Board services team every Monday morning
  • Chair’s forum on 13 November
  • Waitematā Local Board workshops on 14, 21, 28 November and 5 December
  • Civic Trust AGM at the Ellen Melville Centre on 12 November
  • Auckland Transport Powhiri to welcome Dr Belin (Swedish Vision Zero expert) on 13 November
  • Vision Zero session for Local Board members on 15 November at Auckland Transport
  • Lower Queen Street Plans – Brief members from CRL on 15 November
  • Meeting with Teed Street retailers and Newmarket Business Association on 16 November
  • Auckland Harbour Bridge lights update with Mayor Phil and Vector representatives on 16 November
  • Meeting with Age Concern Auckland on 16 November
  • Traffic calming workshop for board members organised by the Albert-Eden Local Board on 16 November
  • Grey Lynn Business Association meeting with new committee on 16 November
  • Herne Bay Residents Association AGM on 16 November
  • Meeting with the Chair of the Wynyard Quarter Transport Association on 17 November
  • West Lynn shops site visit with Auckland Transport on 17 November (Attachment 1 details the issues that were identified at the site visit that are now being followed up by AT)
  • Local Board input into Regional / sub-regional decision making – CENTRAL on 20 November
  • Waitematā Local Board business meeting on 21 November
  • Catch up with General Manager, K’rd Business Association on 22 November
  • Domain Committee pre-agenda meeting on 22 November
  • Attended a site visit with Auckland Transport and the Occupy Garnet Road group on 22 November including a walk of the route to the West Lynn shops
  • Joint Governing Body / Local Board Chairs Meeting on 22 November
  • Attended the Governing Body meeting on 23 November to support Deputy Chair Shale Chambers and board member Richard Northey’s presentation regarding the location of the America’s Cup Village
  • Myers Park / Waihorotiu public artwork (Mayoral Drive underpass) – review of developed concept at the officers of Warren & Mahoney on 23 November
  • Update on 2018 Auckland Arts Festival programme with the Festival Artistic Director and Chief Executive
  • Site visit to the rehearsal space at 313 Queen Street on 24 November (prior to the beginning of renewal work and confirmation of a community lease tenancy of the space)
  • Meeting with the co-chairs Grey Lynn Business Association on 24 November
  • Grey Lynn Business Association hosted meeting regarding the issues at West Lynn shops at the Grey Lynn RSC on 28 November
  • Tour of the refurbishments at the Central Library on 29 November
  • Meeting with the board’s communications adviser on 29 November
  • Meeting to discuss LTP (10-year budget) consultation material
  • Domain Committee site visit and business meeting at Auckland Museum on 30 November
  • Grey Lynn Residents Association AGM on 30 November
  • Meeting with Soala Wilson from the Occupy Garnet Road Group on 1 December
  • Leadership for Local Board Leaders – session one on 4 December
  • Ponsonby Community Centre AGM on 4 December
  • Auckland Paths Project Refresh – Workshop 1 on 6 December
  • LGNZ Governance and Strategy Advisory Group meeting in Wellington on 7 December
  • Catch up with GM Parnell Business Association on 8 December
  • Meeting with Parnell Trust on 8 December
  • Chairs’ Forum on 11 December
  • West Lynn community reference group meeting with Auckland Transport on 11 December
  • Ponsonby Business Association meeting and Christmas breakfast on 12 December
  • Parnell cycleway progress update with Auckland Transport on 12 December
  • Waitemata Local Board business meeting on 12 December

Events and functions:  8 November until 12 December

  • Attended the Trafinz conference 8- 10 November in Nelson (Attachment 2)
  • Armistice Day Commemoration Ceremony at Auckland Museum on 11 November
  • Women in Urbanism Vision Zero presentation with Dr Belin and panel discussion at Ellen Meville Centre on 13 November (photo right- on the panel with Dr Belin, Caroline Perry from Brake and Jessica Rose, Albert-Eden Board member)
  • Westpac Regional Business Awards- Central at the Langham Hotel at the invitation of ATEED on 14 November
  • Gave the vote of thanks at Auckland Conversations Vision Zero event on 15 November
  • Auckland Harbour Bridge lights update and morning tea with Mayor Phil and Vector representatives on 16 November.  The Harbour Bridge will be the first bridge in the world to have its lighting powered entirely by solar energy. The LED lights will be individually controlled and will transform our bridge with lighting shows for special events and occasions.
  • Launched the Adopt a Tree campaign organised by the Urban Tree Alliance with a grant from the local board. Held at Western Park on 18 November
  • Ellen Melville Centre community day on 18 November (photo right with board members Adriana Christie and Richard Northey and the EMC team)
  • Grey Lynn Pump Track opening party on 18 November (Photo below right Johnloyd, aged 7 in his winning race)
  • Parnell Festival of Roses on 19 November
  • Stand for Zero at Silo Park to commemorate international day of road traffic victims on 19 November
  • Fire and Emergency NZ stakeholder function to meet Chair, Hon Paul Swain, board members and the Chief Executive Rhys Jones at Rydges Hotel on 20 November
  • ASB Classic 2018 Launch at Holy Trinity Cathedral on 22 November
  • Opening of the Latvian honorary consulate in Auckland on 23 November
  • Grey Lynn Park Festival on 25 November
  • Santa Parade at the invitation of Crackerjack Productions on 26 November
  • Low carbon Christmas organised by the low carbon network at Studio One on 29 November
  • Rainbow Youth sponsors breakfast on 30 November
  • Lifewise Christmas function at Merge Café on 30 November
  • Annual Enviroschools celebration at Western Springs Community Hall on 1 December. I presented to Newmarket School with a certificate to recognise their commitment to sustainability (photo right)
  • Opening Night of the Franklin Road Christmas Lights on 1 December (photo right with Governor General, Mayor Phil Goff and lights coordinator Roscoe Thorby)
  • Ponsonby Market Day on 2 December
  • Lightpath Festival on 2 December (photo below with Minister of Transport Phil Twyford)
  • Wither Hills West End Tennis Cup Tournament finals on 3 December (at the invitation of the West End Tennis Club)
  • At the Lightpath Festival with Minister of Transport Phil Twyford

    Sugartree Design showcase at Sugartree apartments on 5 December

  • Attended Basement Theatre’s Patron’s night and Christmas show Santa Claus on 7 December
  • Opened the exhibition Changing Gear: Celebrating cycling in Aotearoa on 8 December (opening speech Attachment 3)
  • Italian Christmas market on 9 December at Freemans Bay Community Hall on 9 December
  • Joined the official party at the Citizenship Ceremony at the Town Hall on 11 December

Monthly board report May 2016

My monthly board report covering activities from 1 April until 1 May 2016. Included on the agenda for the Waitemata Local Board meeting on 10 May 2016.


Annual budget 2016/17

An extraordinary meeting of the Board was held on 26 April to confirm the Board’s position on Local Development Initiatives budgets, our advocacy positions and regional annual plan issues.

Included in the report for the meeting was an overview of 147 submissions received for Waitematā. The board received clear support for the priority projects we wish to take forward in 16/17.  

Franklin Road

Following a community liaison group meeting in early April Auckland Transport released the latest designs for the upgrade of Franklin Road. 

Franklin Road side street treatmentsFeatures include:

  • Improved pavement surface, footpaths and drainage.
  • Protecting tree root zones from vehicles by redefining the berm area.
  • Providing for the safe movement of pedestrians, cyclists and vehicles.
  • Retaining as much street parking as possible.
  • Working with utility providers to minimise disruption and deliver an integrated programme of works.
  • Improving street lighting – suspended lighting is currently proposed

franklin-road-artist-impression Franklin RoadI am particularly pleased to see included in the design raised tables on all the side streets. This is a pedestrian safety outcome the Local Board has advocated for since the beginning of the project.

A final round of engagement was undertaken on the detailed design by Auckland Transport until 10 May. Stage 1 (utility upgrade) physical works is due to start in May. Stage 2 works will start in October/November. The current completion date is mid to late 2017

Renaming lower Khartoum Place

 In December 2015 I brought a Notice of Motion to the Board proposing the renaming of lower Khartoum Place with a suitable name associated with women’s suffrage, and in recognition of the Women’s Suffrage Centenary Memorial 1893-1993 ‘Women Achieve the Vote’.

The proposal received Board support opening the way for a name changing process to commence.  Consultation on naming options is taking place until 25 May.

Path widening in Grey Lynn park for the new Greenways route
Path widening in Grey Lynn park for the new Greenways route

Greenways Design Guide

Work is underway on a design guide which covers both on-street and parks and open space greenways that is intended to become the key resource for the implementation of greenways across Auckland.

The feedback I collated in Attachment A was provided on behalf of the Waitematā Local Board to the Greenways team. 

Photo right: progress on the widening of the Greenways route through Grey Lynn Park

Signage trial

Wayfinding trial at Wynyard As part of a Regional signage project Auckland Transport is trialling various signage elements in four precincts. Signage being trialled includes street signs, pedestrian signs, information hubs (large and small), cycling signs and routes, and public transport signage.

It is good to see the trial at Wynyard Quarter with signage designed for tourists and locals to be able to navigate around central Auckland attractions. There are lots of positive features included including te reo Maori.  However as the Transport portfolio has previously highlighting we still consider the background colour is too dark, the map is not useful without showing where it fits into a wider area and the descriptions are too subjective.  The map also shows Wellesley Street as a walking route through to the Domain – a long standing issue we have raised with ATEED and Auckland Transport. 

Feedback is open until 20 May 2016

 Weona Westmere walkwayWeona – Westmere Walkway

 Phase one of the Weona –Westmere walkway is now open and phase two is well underway. It is now possible to take a scenic walk along coast line that has not been accessible for over 80 years. After visiting on beautiful day in April I felt very proud that the Board (with Shale leading the way) has stuck with this project for the last 5 years.  I think locals and visitors will be very impressed when the 1.4km route is fully opened in September.

Mt Eden car freeMaungawhau/Mt Eden is glorious to visit now the maunga is free of vehicles 

Mt Eden is not in Waitematā but I give thanks to all those who worked so hard over the last 10 years to get cars off the summit. On a recent visit at sunset it was great to see how many people were enjoying the easy walk to the top.

Berm planting guidelines

 The Board gave feedback on Auckland Transport’s draft guidelines in September last year. We are still waiting on the final draft that was Firth Road berm May 2016promised before Easter.

In the meantime I am enjoying all the neighbourly interactions that occur whenever I am outside looking after my (non-complying) berm. 

Parking – the good, the bad and the ugly

 I have been following up on a number of parking issues and concerns outlined in Attachment B.

Auckland Conversations – The value of well designed cities

Auckland Conversation JoeJoe Minicozzi, Principal of Urban3  presented, in a very entertaining way, the research that illustrates the benefits of urban density, heritage conservation and mixed-use developments. These have an economic impact that lead to creating sustainable and vibrant cities. 

The image right shows the maths of land value plus improved value (CV)  applied to Auckland (by Kent Lamberg from MR Cagney). 

Workshops and meetings

From 1 April until 1 May  2016 I attended:

  • Ponsonby Community Centre Board meeting on 4 April
  • Waitematā Local Board workshop on 5 April
  • Communications catch up on 5 April
  • Franklin Road Community Liaison Meeting on 5 April
  • Ponsonby Road paid parking zone consultation open day at Studio One on 6 April
  • Parks portfolio meeting on 7 April
  • Elected member professional development focus group meeting on 8 April
  • Albert Park safety meeting on 8 April organised by Hon Nikki Kaye with Superintendent Richard Chambers, Inspector Jill Rogers, Area Commander for Auckland City Central and Gary Davy from the Police, Naisi Chen (Chinese NZ Students Association) and Will Matthews (President AUSA) and Auckland Council representatives
  • Youth Voice Phase 2 Cluster Workshops on 9 April at Auckland Central Library  to explore youth-led models options under an empowered communities approach
  • Richmond Rovers strategic plan community meeting on 11 April
  • Waitematā Local Board business meeting on 12 April in Parnell
  • Waitematā Local Board hui with iwi regarding Khartoum Place name change
  • Elected member development programme – political advisory group meeting on 13 April
  • Stakeholder meeting regarding the Khartoum Place name change on 13 April
  • Ponsonby Business Association Board meeting on 14  April
  • Waitematā Local Board workshop on 14 April
  • Wynyard Quarter neighbours forum on 19 April
  • Waitematā Local Board workshop on 19 April
  • Ponsonby Business Association meeting for PBA members with Auckland Transport’s parking team on 19 April
  • Monthly Transport portfolio catch up on 20 April
  • Meeting to discuss the Board’s transport advocacy positions on 21 April
  • Waitematā Local Board workshop on 26 April
  • Presentation from Fresh Concept on Lower Queen St Activation Plans
  • Waitematā Local Board Extraordinary Meeting on 26 April – Annual Budget information
  • Auckland Transport open day on the wayfinding signage trial at Wynyard Quarter
  • Community portfolio meeting on 27 April
  • Inner City Network meeting and presentation on accessibility

Events and functions

From 1 April until 1 May 2016 I attended:

  • Francis Reserve Womens centre community garden Board and Leonie Auckland Theatre Company’s You can always hand them back at Sky Theatre on 2 April (at the invitation of ATC)
  • Bike breakfast at Scarecrow café on 6 April
  • Auckland Conversations on 7 April
  • Opening of the SKIP/ Women’s Centre Francis Reserve (photo right) community garden on 9 April
  • Jam on Toast at the Grey Lynn Community Centre 10 April
  • Japan Day at the Cloud opening reception on 10 April
  • Kokako turns 15 celebratory event on 15 April
  • Welcome morning tea for the new general manager of the K’rd Business Association on 15 April
  • Farewell to Charlotte from Splice on 15 April
  • Between Tides at Westmere beach on 17 April
  • Anzac day service hosted by the Grey Lynn RSC
  • Open Streets K’rd on 1 May (photo below with Margaret Lewis from the K’rd Business Assocation and Kathryn King, Auckland Transport’s walking and cycling manager who hosted the event). Congratulations to everyone involved in putting on such a fantastic event. K’rd was full of people enjoying the vehicle – free space.


Monthly Board Report December 2014

Child Fund NZ's Tree of Bikes at Queens Wharf
Child Fund NZ’s Tree of Bikes at Queens Wharf

This report covers my Waitematā Local Board activities during November 2014 as Deputy Chair, lead for the Community and Transport portfolios, Chair of the Grants Committee, Deputy Chair of the Central Joint Funding Committee and with positions on the Ponsonby Business Association and Ponsonby Community Centre Committee.

I was acting chair for the week of 17th November.

This is my final report for 2014 and also brings to an end the first year of this term of Auckland Council.

Many thanks to all those who have supported the Board’s work during 2014. I’d also like to take this opportunity to wish everyone a happy festive season & summer solstice (photo right: Child Fund NZ’s brilliant Tree of Bikes at Queens Wharf)

Recommended resolution:

a)     That the report be received.

b)     That the Waitemata Local Board

i) Supports encouraging and enabling community use of berms as much as practicable

ii) Supports the development of berm-planting guidelines, which would include:

  •    Benefits of appropriate berm planting
  •    Safe depths to dig to
  •    Ideal plants in a number of categories – natives, food, trees
  •    Maintenance expectations, including in regard to safety eg height
  • Role of Local Boards in acting as a key conduit for Auckland Transport to have community relationships around berm planting
  • Working with neighbours

iii) Requests Auckland Transport develop berm planting guidelines in conjunction with Local Boards

iv)  Requests Auckland Transport report on progress to the Board’s February meeting.

Portfolio reports:  Transport

Parking – Amendment to Road Users Rules to allow residents to park over their own driveways

At the Waitematā Local Board November meeting Trevor Lund, a member of the Freemans Bay Residents Association, presented in public forum seeking a letter of support from the Board requesting NZTA amend clause 6.9 of the Road Users Rule to allow Road Controlling Authorities (in this case Auckland Transport) to exempt residents with a permit, and allow them to park across their own driveways (parallel to the kerb, not over the footpath).

The proposal has the potential to create additional parking spaces in areas where there is high demand for on-road parking. In the response to Mr Lund’s presentation the Board passed the following resolution.

9.2 Public Forum – Trevor Lund, Freemans Bay Resident
Resolution number WTM/2014/215MOVED by Chairperson S Chambers, seconded by Deputy Chairperson PJ Coom:

  1. a)      That Trevor Lund be thanked for his attendance and presentation to the Board.
  2. b)      That the proposal be referred to Auckland Transport and the Transport portfolio holders for further consideration and that this be reported back to the Board meeting on 8 December 2014

Parking on Garnet RoadThe proposal was discussed at the transport portfolio monthly catch up on 26 November.  We considered the benefits of the proposal for areas like Freemans Bay where on street parking is at capacity due to all day commuter parking.  We noted a number of points

  •  Currently where a resident parks across their driveway (parallel to the kerb or facing the driveway as in the photo right but not over the footpath) Auckland Transport will not enforce the rule unless there is a complaint.   The rule gives Auckland Transport the ability to act where there is a dispute over access or safety issues.
  •  There are benefits to all residents of keeping driveways clear for example driveways provide safer crossing points for pedestrians particularly with pushchairs. A  street with no gaps in the on- street parking could also create hazards for wheelchair users and mobility scooters.
  • The resident parking zone that Auckland Transport is going to consult on early next year is intended alleviate much of the parking pressure on Freemans Bay.
  •  Many residents may wish to see occupancy rates reduce on residential streets once the parking zone is installed and not wish to encourage additional parking across driveways.
  • There are administrative issues for Auckland Transport to consider for example how to identify the legitimate home owner’s car and how to enforce complaints. There are also costs associated with a permit scheme (and residents may query why a permit should be necessary for an activity that is currently “permitted”).

Overall the transport portfolio concluded that while we wish to support proposals that will address the very serious parking issues currently experienced in Freemans Bay we think there are a number of down-sides to a rule change.  Also in practice it is likely to make very little difference to the parking available because residents already park across their own driveways when necessary.

However we will continue to discuss the options with the Freemans Bay Residents Association and Auckland Transport and support Auckland Transport undertaking a trial of the proposal. We also recommend the Board re-consider providing a letter of support to NZTA once the residents parking zone has been implemented and the impact assessed.

Notice of Requirement hearing – removal of 6 mature pohutukawa trees on Great North Road

Auckland Transport's planting schedule
Auckland Transport’s planting schedule

I attended the Notice of Requirement hearing on 5 and 6 November in support of the Board’s objection to Auckland Transport’s proposal to remove 6 mature Pohutukawa trees on Great North Road. The Board’s lawyer Nick Whittington did a fantastic job at the hearing arguing that the adverse impact of removing the trees on GNR would be “significant” and “enduring” and outlined why Auckland Transport evidence was  “back-filling, self-serving and cursory”.  We have asked AT to consider an alternative option (referred to in the hearing as option 6).

Disappointingly Auckland Transport has stuck to their position that there is no alternative but to remove these notable trees (probably planted on Arbor Day in 1934) for road widening to provide for two lanes turning from Great North Road on to a new St Lukes bridge.   At the hearing AT represented their proposed planting plan to replace the trees. (photo right)

An aspect of the hearing that was particularly preposterous was the 54 submissions out of 64  that all had wrong submission numbers were found to be “invalid” due to clerical error.  One submitter Jolisa Gracewood has written here about the experience of being so terribly let down by the process.

Fortunately she still chose to speak and put forward her very well considered points, as she said “Auckland Transport’s plan prioritises car movement at all costs: no creative thought for how to safely move everyone else”

The Commissioners are due to release their decision on 17 December.

Cycling improvements

Great North Road feeder lane before afterI was really thrilled to see the greening of new feeder lanes on Great North Road and K’rd at the end of November. As previously reported the issues with the Great North Road intersection were logged with Auckland Transport four years ago (one of the first safety issues I raised with AT after first getting elected). Due to the narrow lanes cyclists were forced to either navigate 3 lanes of traffic or mount the kerb to avoid getting squashed by buses and cars. AT’s original response was to say the feeder was not possible without the widening of the road by removing heritage buildings. Fortunately after persistent advocacy from the Board and Cycle Action Auckland someone clever at AT got on to the job earlier this year and came up with a solution not only on the Great North Road side of the intersection but also the K’rd approach (feeder lanes for the Ponsonby Road and Newton Road sections are also about to be installed)

Monthly transport update

A monthly update with Auckland Transport took place on 26 November.  Current issues are reported back monthly by Auckland Transport on our public agenda including the details of the consultation undertaken with the Transport portfolio on behalf of the Board.

Portfolio reports:  Community

Berm planting guidelines

Hepburn StreetIn July 2013 Auckland Transport standardised the urban berm moving service so that generally all owners and occupiers adjacent to road side grass verges (berms) are responsible for maintenance. Auckland Transport has provided various exceptions such as on road corridors through town centres and on steep sections.

Following an increase in residents informally planting on the berms Auckland Transport undertook in February 2014 to draft guidelines. These guidelines have not yet been forthcoming, even in draft form, although the Community Placemaking Champions group of Local Board members (of which I am a member)  was recently briefed that “private” berm guidelines will be released for consultation in 2015.  “Private” applies to people who wish to plant a berm that is adjacent to their existing property, and will not cover community groups or gardening collectives who may wish to plant on berms.

The champions group has recognised that the guidelines provide an opportunity to support the “placemaking” function of berms and to foster the many benefits.   For example – litter reduction, storm water management, streetscape amenity values, community development and the promotion of bio-diversity.  Guidelines can provide a best practice framework for street planting while minimising the impact on the road corridor. For example the City of Sydney Footpath Gardening Policy  allows residents and businesses to put planter boxes on the footpath and/or carry out gardening on footpath verges outside their properties under certain conditions.

Auckland Transport’s approach to the guidelines (including advice currently on AT’s website which incorrectly states berm planting is prohibited) suggests that the draft guidelines are not being approached from a placemaking perspective but mainly to identify what is not allowed in the road corridor for safety reasons.

Local Boards are best placed to develop the guidelines with Auckland Transport and to assist with the smooth implementation.  I therefore recommend that the Board confirms support for encouraging and enabling community use of berms as much as practicable and directs Auckland Transport to develop appropriate guidelines in conjunction with Local Boards.

Community grants

The Community Grants Committee met in November to consider applications to the second round.  We received applications totalling $$104,731 from the available $$69,153.

The committee’s recommendations are on the December agenda. Applications to the third and final community grant round for 14/15 can be made until 6 March 2015 (for a decision in April).

I also attended the Central Joint Funding Committee Meeting on 28 November to consider applications to Round 1 Auckland City Cultural Heritage Fund. We confirmed funding for 5 projects totally $23,322.93 including assistance to St Joseph’s Church, Grey Lynn (leadwork maintenance) and St Patricks Cathedral (restoration work) within the Waitematā Local Board area.  $26,677.07 remains for the final round from this fund (which will cease to exist once the new funding policy is implemented for 15/16)

Community Gardens

Te Maara Community Garden blessing
Te Maara Community Garden blessing

One of the Board’s priorities is to support community gardens so I was particularly pleased to attend the blessing of Te Māra  (the Grey Lynn Community Garden).   Redevelopment of this garden at St Columba Church under the guidance of a new vicar Brent Swann was made possible with a community grant from the Board

Also during November a new initiative has been launched called Kai Auckland   – a movement for all Aucklanders that offers a cohesive and integrated approach to creating connection and nourishment through food. Groups such as community gardens, food coops and farmers markets are encouraged to register on the site.

Kelmarna Community Gardens

Framework Trust confirmed during November that they are no longer in a position to sub-lease Kelmarna Community gardens. This has been a distressing time for the clients and Framework employees who work at the gardens.  Fortunately Kelmarna Community Gardens Trust has confirmed that they would like to continue with the lease (which is about to be renewed) and are keen to explore options with the Board for continuing the management of the gardens. A meeting has been arranged with the Trustees, relevant Community Development officers and the community portfolio members to discuss options going forward.

Workshops and meetings

In the period 1 November – 30 November I attended:

  • Ponsonby Community Centre management committee meeting on 3 November
  • Local Board Workshop on 4 November
  • Attended the Notice of Requirement hearing remove 6 Pohutukawa trees on Great North Road on 5 and 6 November
  • Meet Ponsonby Business Association GM on 6 November
  • Communications catch up on  10 November
  • Engagement adviser catch up on 10 November
  • Auckland’s Resource Recovery Network – Workshop for Local Board Members on 10 November The purpose of this workshop is to update you on the RRN and discuss the opportunities that resource recovery facilities can provide local boards to progress community, economic development and environmental objectives. Presentations from Xtreme Waste Raglan and the new Waiuku Recovery Centre
  • Ponsonby Business Association Board meeting on 11 November
  • City Centre activation programme
  • Te Reo Māori exam on 11 November
  • Waitematā Local Board business meeting on 11 November
  • Attended presentation to Ponsonby Business Association members on 254 Ponsonby Road options on 12 November
  • Meeting  on 13 November with  Auckland Transport regarding the prioritisation of transport projects for the Long Term Plan
  • Waitematā Local Board workshop on 13 November
  • LGNZ Zone One meeting in Maungawhai on 14 November
  • Workshop  on 18 November with governing body members on options for the Aotea Square/Civic Administration Building
  • Waitematā Local Board workshop on 18 November
  • Meeting up of community group representatives organised by Auckland Transport to discuss plans for an “open streets” even on Quay St in April 2015
  • Joint Governing Body and Local Board Chairs meeting on 19 November (A regular meeting offering the opportunity for the two arms of Auckland Council’s governance to discuss and debate key issues)
  • Meeting with local resident regarding resource consent issues
  • Community Grants briefing on 20 November
  • Local Board Chairs Greenways Plans and Walking and Cycling Networks Collaboration Meeting on 24 November
  • Community Grants Committee meeting on 24 November
  • Shinagawa Peace Delegation to Auckland
    Shinagawa Peace Delegation to Auckland

    Meeting with Shinagawa Peace Delegation hosted by Cr Cathy Casey (This year marks the 30th anniversary of the Nuclear-free Peaceful City Shinagawa Declaration.  As part of the commemorations, a peace delegation from Shinagawa will be visiting Auckland from the 24th to the 26th November.   The purpose of the visit is to exchange information about peace initiatives that are part of the wider ‘Cities for Peace’ movement, of which Auckland Council became a part in 2011.  The delegation will also meet with the Peace Council and staff members from the Peace Foundation while they are in Auckland.)

  • Meeting with Sustainable Coastlines to discuss their Waterfront training centre and resource recovery park concept to be built at Wynyard Quarter
  • Stakeholders consultation meeting on the Newmarket Laneways Plan on 24 November
  • Ponsonby Community Centre AGM on 24 November
  • Waitematā Local Board workshop on 25 November
  • Communications catch up on 25 November
  • Meeting to discuss LTP 2015 consultation events with the Board’s engagement adviser
  • Civil Defence Community Response Group meeting hosted by Grey Lynn Neighbourhood support
  • Monthly Transport portfolio catch up on  26 November
  • Community Development portfolio monthly catch up on 26 November
  • Central Joint Funding Committee Meeting on 28 November – Round 1 Auckland City Cultural Heritage Fund Applications

Events and functions

In the period 1 November – 30 November 2014 I attended:

  • Blessing of Te Māra – St Columba Community Gardens – He Timatanga Hou Project on 1 November
  • Beach Road stage II consultation open day at Britomart Market on 1 November
  • Reuse to reduce market at Auckland Zoo for conservation week
  • ATC’s Jesus Christ Superstar opening night production at Q Theatre on 1 November at the invitation of ATC
  • Grey Lynn Farmers Market AGM on 2 November (I was re-elected Chair of the management committee)
  • Blend with the BruntlettsBlend with the Bluntletts ride on 2 November organised by Generation Zero, Transportblog, Blend Store and the Frockers at Frocks on Bikes – Auckland (photo right published in the Auckland City Harbour News)
  • Green Desk interview with blogger and writer Melissa Bruntlett, who lives life on two wheels in Vancouver, about Van Cycle Chic – Observations from an Emerging Bike Culture.
  • Auckland Conversations on 4 November Vancouver Cycle Chic: Observations from emerging bike culture Chris & Melissa Bruntlett ( report back on their presentation)
  • Silo Theatre’s Blind Date at Basement Theatre at the invitation of Silo Theatre on 5 November
  • Cycle Action’s Associates breakfast on 6 November
  • Light Show at the Auckland Art Gallery (I couldn’t make it to the opening night but enjoyed going with friends)
  • The Official Launch of Federal Street on 7 November
  • Franklin Road upgrade Open Day – Community Information Session on 8 November hosted by Auckland Transport
  • Sustainable Coastlines the Love Project at Silo Six
  • Armistice Day CommemorationArmistice Day Commemoration at Auckland Museum
  • Art in the Dark launch on 12 November and attended Art in the Dark at Western Park on 2 of the 4 nights (one of the four nights was cancelled)
  • Parnell Festival of Roses opening speech and helped at the Board’s stand to consult on the Pt Resolution plan
  • Launch of the ATEED innovation plan at GRID AKL
  • Creative Communities Showcase hosted by Auckland Council
  • World of Wearable Art Exhibition Launch at the Auckland Museum
  • Opening of the Outside Art Fair hosted by Toi Ora Art Trust on 21 November
  • Nuffield Street, Newmarket Christmas Festival on 22 November
  • Glenn Innes to Tamaki Drive cycleway open day hosted by Auckland Transport on 22 November
  • Picnic with board members Christopher Dempsey and Deborah Yates for the Daldy Street opening Party Saturday 22 November
  • Auckland Conversation – Affordable Housing Panel Discussion on 24 November
  • Blessing of Myers Park new playground on 26 November
  • Spring Fling event in Takapuna hosted by Auckland Transport and Frocks on Bikes on 26 November
  • Daldy Street Picnic
    Daldy Street Picnic

    Consultation and Engagement Awards 2014 at the Town Hall on 28 November  (Since 2011, the Consultation and Engagement Awards have recognised excellence, and encouraged quality and innovation in public participation. The awards are a chance to celebrate and have pride in the high standard of community consultation that happens across Auckland, ensuring sustainable decisions can be made and ultimately creating the world’s most liveable city while delivering Aucklanders great value for money. Congratulations to the Local Board Services Team who won the “involve” category and the People’s choice award for the 21 Local Board Plan)

  • Lighting up of the Child Fund NZ Tree of Bikes on Queens Wharf on 28 November
  • Grey Lynn Park Festival and helped out on the Waitemata Local Board stand consulting on the draft Grey Lynn Park Development Plan on 29 November
  • Santa Parade on 30 November at the invitation of ATEED
Grey Lynn Festival consultation stand (Photo Michael McClintock Ponsonby News)
Grey Lynn Festival consultation stand (Photo Michael McClintock Ponsonby News)


Book gifted by the author: Auckland’s Remarkable Urban Forest by Mike D Wilcox

Monthly Board Report November 2014

This report covers my Waitematā Local Board activities during October 2014 as Deputy Chair, lead for the Community and Transport portfolios, Chair of the Grants Committee, Deputy Chair of the Central Joint Funding Committee and with positions on the Ponsonby Business Association and Ponsonby Community Centre Committee.


Greenways proposal - Grey Lynn ParkGreenways

At our October meeting the Board approved a budget of $350,000 from the Auckland Transport capex budget, for the Waitematā Greenways Project (Route G1) in-park route. Consultation on the route design will take place alongside the draft Grey Lynn Park Development Plan.

In addition we have asked Auckland Transport to bring forward the budget to progress the on-road sections of  Route G1 to connect Coxs Bay and Grey Lynn Park with the North Western Cycleway  (the designs are with Auckland Transport ready for public consultation).

Franklin Road upgrade

Franklin Road cyclists
Photo Credit: Non- Motorist @ByTheMotorway

The much needed upgrade of Franklin Road has been in the too hard basket for many years due to the challenge and costs of accommodating historic trees, utilities, parking and transport requirement.  Fortunately the Board and Freemans Bay residents’ persistent advocacy has paid off and Auckland Transport is now planning a major upgrade to get underway in early 2016.

Auckland Transport is consulting on 2 possible options for the design of the road. While it is really positive to see the upgrade progress I have raised with Auckland Transport my concern about the lack of Local Board input at an early stage of the option development and the failure to recognise the Board objectives for the Franklin Road which were finalised following community consultation. The two options only go part way to achieving the improvements we would like to see for this iconic Auckland street:

Franklin Road optionsAuckland Transport to undertake the planned upgrade of Franklin Road including road resurfacing, undergrounding of services, footpath upgrade, pedestrian crossings, cycle path and on road parking and to provide for safe and continuous walking and cycling pathways from Ponsonby Road to Victoria Park including continuous pedestrian facilities (i.e. an unbroken footpath on both sides of the road) across all side streets, driveways and intersections (for example by installing raised tables).  Local Board Agreement 2104/2015


One of the Board’s Transport priorities is for Auckland Transport to implement a residential parking zone scheme to manage commuter parking in central Auckland suburbs (Local Board Agreement 2014/15 Transport Advocacy area). The extension of the successful St Mary’s Bay scheme to city areas suffering the biggest impact from on- street parking has been on hold while Auckland Transport consults on the parking discussion document.

The good news is that Auckland Transport has confirmed at our October catch up that parking occupancy surveys are going to start in Ponsonby and Freemans Bay in November with the aim of consulting on a proposed zone in March 2015.

A zonal approach to parking has the potential to benefit local residents and businesses and provide for short term parking for visitors.

Gladstone Road/Avon Street intersection

Auckland Transport has consulted on safety improvements at the intersection of Avon Street and Gladstone Road in Parnell that involve the removal of angle parking outside the local shops. Following a site visit, consideration of the feedback on the proposal and a public forum presentation from the local building owner and Parnell Community Committee the Board passed the following resolution:

The Waitemata Local Board requests Auckland Transport take a holistic approach to improving cyclist and pedestrian amenity on Gladstone Road and consider traffic calming and mitigation measures that do not require the removal of angled parking at the Gladstone Road/Avon Street Intersection.

Legible Auckland

Waima Street wayfinding signWayfinding signage continues to be installed by Auckland Transport where a request is logged. It is surprising how few directional signs exist to guide pedestrians and cyclists around our city.

Although it was great to see this sign (photo right) appear on the corner of Waima Street/Great North Road I have followed up with Auckland Transport regarding the curious content on the sign with the following queries:

The original request was for a directional sign to the NW cycleway however the information on the sign covers everything except that. What is the reason? Has this design come out of AT’s wayfinding project? Is this now the template or just temporary? NZTA have used distance for their cycleway signage. Why has AT used travel time? Is the time intended for the walker or rider?  Is this now a standard approach?

Cycling Advisory Group Meeting

At the Advisory Group meeting in October discussions continued on the prioritisation of cycling projects. Richard Leggart, Chair of the NZ Cycle Safety Panel discussed the recommendations in the panel’s Safer Journeys for People who Cycle report which was open for feedback until 24 October.

We also heard from Auckland Transport about improvements to the existing network and the development of a customer charter.

I emphasised at the meeting the need for early Local Board input into Auckland Transport’s work programme to best leverage the maintenance budget to address deficiencies on the network.

pohutukawa treesFight to save 6 mature pohutukawa trees on Great North Road

Preparations have been underway during October for the hearing taking place on 5 and 6 November regarding the Board’s objection to Auckland Transport’s Notice of Requirement to remove 6 mature Pohutukawa trees on Great North Road. The removal is sought by AT for road widening to provide for two lanes turning from Great North Road on to a new St Lukes bridge.

The Board’s objection is based on our view that there are alternatives available to Auckland Transport that could retain the trees but achieve the same transport outcomes. All the experts agree that removing the trees will result in a significant adverse effect to the environment. As one submitter put it “the trees provide a buffer of civility amid 19 lanes of tarmac”.

Monthly transport update

A monthly update with Auckland Transport took place on 29 October.  Current issues are reported back monthly by Auckland Transport on our public agenda including the details of the consultation undertaken with the Transport portfolio on behalf of the Board.


Parnell Festival of Roses Accessibility

For a second year the Waitemata Local Board is aiming to make the Parnell Festival of Roses accessible for all. With the support of the community portfolio, member Christopher Dempsey has been working with Paul Brown, Strategic Advisor Disability to confirm the initiatives to be funded from an accessibility budget of $2000.

At the Festival on 15 and 16 November there will be an audio described walk and rose-potting workshop for blind and vision impaired visitors taking place from 11:45 -1.15pm and Rudd (the Bugman) Kleinpaste’s talk 1:30-2.00pm will be audio described.  Rudd’s talks on both the Saturday and Sunday are being signed in New Zealand Sign Language. Accessibility Information has also been circulated.

Family, Whanau and Sexual Violence

We received an update from Kelly Maung on the work she is doing to progress a multi- sector strategic action plan to deal with Family, Whanau and Sexual Violence.  Commitment to this initiative by Council has developed out of the Auckland Plan goal to be the world’s most liveable city and involves partnering with central government.

Kelly has challenged the Board to proactively contribute to White Ribbon day next year. Member Deborah Yates is progressing this with our male colleagues.

Western ParkPark site visits

I joined the Parks team and iwi representatives on site visits to Western Park and Grey Lynn Park.

The visits identified exciting opportunities to promote cultural values and the unique historic features of the parks.  There is particularly strong support for day-lighting Tunamau – the stream that is currently piped through Western Park.

Pioneer Womens Hall activation

Work to activate Pioneer Womens Hall as a community hub prior to major refurbishment taking place next year continues.  We recently confirmed a modest budget to support the Jedi Knights Chess Club initiative led by a previously homeless man who has become a regular contributor to the Pioneer Womens Hall working group.

The community portfolio holds a monthly meeting with relevant officers to discuss the on-going work programme.  I also attended a range of meetings during October relevant to the community portfolio – these are detailed below.

Auckland Conversation Brent Toderian: Liveable cities – vibrant waterfronts

Brent Toderian Waterfront AucklandThe former chief planner for Vancouver returned to Auckland at the invitation of Waterfront Auckland to continue his city-shaping advice with a talk on how rethinking our waterfront can transform our city.

Brent was introduced by John Dalzell, CEO Waterfront Auckland as an “Urban Design Warrior”.

Key points I took away from the presentation at Shed 10:

  • Urban planning & city building best way to influence public health and confront the convergence of global issues such as climate change and aging population.
  • Millennials are pre-disposed to urban living as they interact with technology like previous generations interacted with the car (baby boomers “broken hipsters” are also turning to urban living)
  • We need to aim for “density done well on the waterfront” Land use and movement need to be aligned. We need to recognise “induced demand”. It is just politically popular to build roads.
  • Vancouver shows that if you design for multi-modality it is better for drivers. It is about prioritising not being anti-car. Allows for shorter commute times  (20% fewer cars; 40-60% increase in PT; 10-20% increase in cycling)
  • Brent is a fan of the expression “making streets sticky” for people – it is not just about moving through but how to make people stay
  • “Walk score” is a powerful measurement tool used in North America that shows the positive impact on property values of walkable neighbourhoods. In Auckland the evidence is that we don’t care about walkers just drivers.
  • He noted that the conversation about cycling is picking up but believes we will only make progress with separation (ie protected cycleways). This will be the key to a higher bike share. He also noted that there are enough women riders yet
  • Brent calls buses the heroes of PT as nimble & cheap but we need to change the conversation around buses and to provide a better service
  • Mobility is a space problem that benefits from car sharing. One car in  a car share can replace 20 cars
  • We need to aim for consistently high density design. We have the challenge of a working Port but we should use this to our advantage. Height is just a design challenge
  • We also need to ensure that amenities and facilities are built into any development (in Vancouver achieved through density bonusing)
  • Lots of simple but can be hard to do simple

Brent Toderian Auckland ConversationFinal slide (pictured right)

  • Plan like you love cities
  • Listen like you love opinions
  • Design like you love people – and always challenge the word “cant”

Workshops and meetings

In the period 1 October – 31 October I attended:

  • Meeting with Allan Young from ACPL on 1 October to discuss and the implications for Parnell Station, access to the Domain and the regeneration of Waipapa Stream of Kiwi Rail’s proposals to sell the development site where Mainline Steam is currently located
  • Engagement adviser catch up on 1 October
  • Communications catch up on 1 October
  • Local Board Member briefing in Takapuna on spatial priorities and the draft infrastructure strategy that is being developed through the LTP process.
  • Community-led Placemaking Champions Group workshop
  • Local Board Workshop on 7 October
  • AT/Franklin Road Resident’s Meeting on 7 October – Franklin Road Upgrade
  • Meeting to discuss the Child Friendly City project
  • Meetings with the Local Board’s lawyers regarding Notice of Requirement hearing to remove 6 Pohutukawa trees on Great North Road
  • CCO review – Governing Body / Local Board discussion ­– workshop on 8 October provided an opportunity for local board members, councillors and IMSB members on the CCO Governance and Monitoring Committee to receive an update about the CCO review.
  • Review of the Ponsonby Road Plan by Stuart Houghton. A presentation to Board members on 8 October  (on 28 October I arranged for Stuart to present his review to Council and Auckland Transport officers involved in the development of the plan)
  • Meeting with GM of the Ponsonby Business Association
  • Site Visit to Avon Street/ Gladstone Road intersection to meet a representative from Parnell Community Committee and the building owner to discuss AT’s proposal to remove angle parking
  • Meeting with GM of Parnell Community Centre
  • Communications catch up on 13 October
  • Ponsonby Business Association Board meeting on 14 October
  • Cycle Advisory Group Meeting
  • Waitematā Local Board business meeting on 14 October
  • Auckland Transport Taxi operations Plan presentation and discussion with stakeholders
  • Attended the Events portfolio meeting to discuss the Myers Park centenary celebrations and opportunities for community development
  • Waitematā Local Board workshop on 16 October
  • Long Term plan presentation to budget committee
    Photo Credit: Cathy Casey

    Attended the Waitemata Local Board presentation to the Budget Committee led by the Chair as part of the local boards discussions with the governing body held over 2 days  to inform final decision-making on the LTP for consultation. Each local board was given 20 minutes to present and discuss key priorities and advocacy areas (photo right – looking far too happy!)

  • LTP financial policy discussion on 20 October with Local Board representatives
  • Waitematā Local Board workshop on 21 October
  • Community Development portfolio monthly catch up on 22 October
  • Queens Wharf site visit: Briefing in partnership with Waterfront and Auckland Council
  • Western Park site visit and workshop on 24 October with iwi representatives
  • Attended the Waterfront Auckland Board meeting public forum in support of Ponsonby Cruising Club on 29 October
  • Monthly Transport portfolio catch up on  29 October
  • LTP Local Board Cluster Workshop – Central.  Auckland Transport’s engagement with Local Boards about transport priorities for the next decade and how AT has arrived at a prioritised programme, following the Mayor’s budget proposal for the Long Term Plan.
  • Meetings with Auckland Council planners and the Local Board’s lawyers in preparation for the Notice of Requirement hearing to remove 6 Pohutukawa trees on Great North Road
  • Meeting with the CE, Newmarket Business Association
  • Grey Lynn Park Development Plan – site visit to discuss draft update with iwi on 31 October

Events and functions

Smokefree dining with Shale Chambers and Greg MoyleIn the period 1 October – 31 October 2014 I attended:

  • Newmarket Young Fashion Designer Award on 1 October at the invitation of the Newmarket Business Association
  • Cycle Action’s Associates breakfast
  • Pop up smokefree outdoor dining event organised by Auckland Cancer Society in Aotea Square (photo right)
  • Grey Lynn Business Association AGM on 8 October
  • Launch of Art week at Silo 6
  • Opening of Victoria Park Market Art week event
  • Look at K’rd Art Week event
  • Opening ceremony of Auckland Diwali Festival 2014 on 11 October
  • NZ Fashion Museum’s pop-up exhibition, Elle and the Youthquake: The changing face of fashion, at The Nathan Gallery in Britomart.
  • Heritage Festival events on Sunday 12 October: Civic Trust a toast to heritage and the Grey Lynn RSC’s Gaylene Preston WWI presentation
  • Auckland Girls’ Grammar Old Girls’ Association Annual Dinner
  • Great Mugging on Ponsonby Road for Art Week
  • POP 10 : Hauora Garden of Health and Happiness community planting day on 18 October at Studio One Tu Toi 
  • Auckland Conversation with Brent Toderian at Shed 10. Liveable Cities – Vibrant Waterfronts
  • Ponsonby Business Association AGM on 21 October
  • Auckland Arts Festival Launch at the Town Hall on 23 October
  • The New Zealand Dance Company’s Studio Showing at the Wellesley Studio on 28 October at the invitation of the NZ Dance Company
  • Rod Oram in conversation with Sir Stephen Tindall at the Auckland Museum on 30 October hosted by  Anglican Diocese of Auckland’s Diocesan Climate Change Action Group (at the invitation of Rod Oram)

Getting parking right for Auckland

I’ve just attended the Velo-City 2014 conference in Adelaide.  One of the best speakers was Tim Papandreou, Director of Strategic Planning & Policy at the San Fransico municipal transportation agency.  Tim spoke about the range of strategies his agency is employing to achieve sustainable streets.

One of the most important tools, he says, is parking demand management to create more sustainable streets and promote alternative transport options. In SF they estimated 20% of congestion was caused by drivers looking for parking. The approach they have taken with lots of success  (SF Park) is to provide flexible parking options using smart technology to optimise existing parking resources.

There is a lot to be learnt from SF but their parking management approach is particularly relevant as Auckland Transport starts consultation on the Parking discussion document.  Feed back on the document will determine how future parking is managed in Auckland to cope with continuing growth and competing demands on public space.

This following article was first published in Ponsonby News

St Marys Bay parkingParking discussion document

Parking for cars causes one of the biggest headaches for Aucklanders particularly  in our historic inner city suburbs and  the city centre.   In Freemans Bay commuters are waking up residents from the early hours as they start circling for “free” parking. In Ponsonby residents on narrow streets are frustrated at getting infringement notices for parking on the footpath. In Herne Bay residents are feeling the downside of the successful St Marys Bay resident’s parking zone as commuters get pushed into neighbouring streets.

On the Strip the most frequent complaint is about the lack of parking. There are many more issues around price, availability and how public space on our streets is allocated to parking often to the detriment of other transport priorities.    As further development occurs (with less parking built off-street under the Unitary Plan) and the inner city population increases greater demands are going to be placed on space for parking.

The super city restructuring brought together seven legacy council systems of managing parking which created inequalities across the city and failed to resolve long-standing parking issues. For the first time a comprehensive region wide parking policy review is being undertaken by Auckland Transport. Public consultation is open until the end of June to give feedback on how the key parking issues facing Auckland should be addressed.

For the city fringe the proposed approach  applies “demand responsive pricing” for parking adjacent to businesses (using pricing to create capacity – this is how the new city centre parking zone works), the introduction of resident parking scheme (like that currently trialled in St Marys Bay) with priority given to heritage properties with no off- street parking , and paid parking for residential streets close to business, shopping, leisure or public transport.

On arterials it is proposed to prioritise public transport and cycling ahead of parking. Auckland Transport has suggested this may require replacement parking for businesses at convenient locations (as it is currently planned for Dominion Road).

Feedback on a parking discussion document will shape Auckland Transport’s parking strategy and open up the way for the roll out of resident parking zones. These zones will be a game changer for busy areas like Ponsonby Road and neighbouring suburbs where huge amounts of parking could be freed up from commuters for residents and short term visitors.

The Waitemata Local Board will be providing feedback on the discussion document. Our starting point is for effective parking management to provide residents with access to parking in inner city suburbs and to prioritise parking in town centres to support local businesses and welcome shoppers.  We will be listening to our community’s views before commenting.

There is often a perception that the problem with parking is just that there is not enough. However a look at the overall policy approach shows the current issues are really about poor and inconsistent management of our available resources. We welcome Auckland Transport tackling this challenging and at times emotive topic with community input and look forward to the implementation of solutions as soon as possible.

The parking discussion document is available on Auckland Transport’s website:


Monthly Board report June 2013

This report covers my activities from 1 May – 31 May 2013.

Unitary Plan

May has been dominated by the draft Unitary Plan engagement process leading up to the final day for feedback on 31 May. During the month member Tricia Reade and I, with fantastic support from officers, organised additional information sessions across the Waitemata Local Board area.

Photos from information sessions in Grey Lynn, Parnell and Ponsonby

During the month we held information sessions at:

  • Grey Lynn Farmers Market
  • Parnell Farmers Market
  • Station Square, Newmarket
  • Leys Institute Library
  • Grey Lynn Community Centre

I also attended Unitary Plan meetings hosted by the Herne Bay Residents Association, Grey Lynn Business Association/Grey Lynn Residents Association and the Newmarket Community Committee.

Next steps in the development of the draft Unitary Plan (as reported by the Mayor on 30 May)

  • Council officers will now summarise all community and stakeholder  feedback on the plan by theme and locality
  • During June and July, workshops will be held with local boards and key stakeholders on specific issues
  • The final draft plan will then be published and formally notified later this year
  •  The council will then enter a formal consultation period, where Aucklanders will have the opportunity to make formal submissions

Community Funding

The Central Joint Funding Committee met on 23 May to distribute funds from the Community Group Assistance Fund (second and final round for 13/14). The committee is made up of representatives from the Local Boards in the old Auckland City Council area.

The minutes of the committee are available on the Council website

The Waitemata Local Board community grant committee also met during May to consider applications to the fourth and last round of  this financial year 12/13. Recommendations for the allocation of the remaining $18,538.00 (from $80,000 for 12/13) are on this month’s agenda.


The Transport portfolio monthly briefing with Auckland Transport took place on 30 May. We covered:

  • Proposed Grey Lynn shops bus stop changes
  • Richmond Road Safety Action Plan update
  • Union Street/Victoria Street Intersection investigation of keep clear markings
  • Poynton Terrace- consideration of whether AT can install the proposed crossing from St Kevins Arcade to the park as part of the Myers Park upgrade
  • Ponsonby Road bike corral proposal (see below)
  • The Domain traffic calming improvements which are due to start this month (for completion by September)
  • Motor cycle parking issues in the City Centre- options to charge motor cycles for all day on street parking (which is currently difficult to enforce under the new City Centre Parking scheme)
  • Bike parking – proposals for bike parking in the City centre

Full details of current proposals and issues are outlined in Auckland Transport’s monthly report attached to the Board agenda.

Bike Corral on Ponsonby Road

With the support of the Transport portfolio and the Ponsonby Business Association Auckland Transport has chosen 264 Ponsonby Road as the location for a six month trial of Auckland’s first bike corral. This will be an on-street bike parking facility with capacity for 10 bikes designed to best suit the street environment of Ponsonby Road.

Ponsonby_Bike_Corral proposal May 2013

There is now plenty of research to show the economic benefits of encouraging cycling.

The proposed design was consulted on during May. Construction is scheduled for late June.

Transport infrastructure

Geoff Lawler, Director of City Planning and Infrastructure – City of Melbourne, visited Auckland during May. I attended a discussion forum with him for officers and elected representatives on planning for future growth.

Geoff gave an overview of the infrastructure strategy and the projects that have been implemented to cope with the rapid growth and densification of the city of Melbourne.  I was particularly interested in Melbourne’s new transport strategy which sets key directions and targets for a growing city. Around 800,000 people move through the city every day; this is expected to increase to more than one million by 2030.

Melbourne has bold mode share targets and is aiming to be a walking and cycling city.

Mobility by mode – getting into the city centre


Current mode Share

2030 target













 Traffic volumes plateaued in 2005 for a number of factors. PT became a viable alternative due the influence of the Commonwealth Games 2006, there was a political imperative to improve PT and a price shock.

Key messages:

  • Divide intersections by predominant mode not dominate use
  • In Melbourne the move to a metro system and the development of a new $4bn underground line  is considered essential transport infrastructure
  • Car use is discouraged for commuter trips – use is focused on for short term business trips
  • Private car parking discouraged with the introduction of a tax in 2006

More information at

Ponsonby Road master plan working group update

An option identification and development workshop was held with the working group, iwi reps and invited guests on 22 May. The UrbanismPlus team together with Council planning officers presented a range of concepts covering Transport, Open space and Arts, Culture and Heritage and Land Use + Key sites.

The concepts and feedback from the workshop will be presented at workshop in June to Board members.

Other board activities

Local Board Workshops and meetings

I attended during May:

  • Meeting to finalise Waitemata Greenways Plan & report back on public consultation on 1 May
  • Monthly catch up with Ashley Church, Newmarket Business Association and update for NBA Board
  • Unitary Plan information display at the Grey Lynn Farmers Market on Sunday 5 May
  • Meeting with Arch Hill residents on 6 May to discuss the Bunnings development proposal on Great North Road
  • Waitemata Local Board Workshop on 7 May
  • Ponsonby Road master plan fortnightly catch up with officers
  • Waitemata Good Citizen Awards: consideration of nominations
  • Waterfront Auckland presentation on the Heritage walk proposal “ Sea Auckland”
  • Planning team update to the Board on the draft project execution plans for K’rd and Newton Precinct Plans
  • Meeting to discuss Grey Lynn Precinct Plan and Unitary Plan feedback with Planning team and GLBA representatives
  • Unitary plan meeting with representatives from GLBA, GLRA and GLUE on 10 May
  • Unitary Plan information display at the Parnell Farmers Market on Saturday 11 May
  • Selection Panel meeting for Waitemata Good Citizens nominations
  • Waitemata Local Board business meeting at Graham Street on 14 May
  • ATEED update, Heritage Hotel on 15 May
  • Waitemata Local Board Workshop 16 May
  • Getting Parking Right for Auckland Seminar Part 2 with Todd Litman hosted by the Board, Auckland Transport and AECOM on 16 May
  • LGNZ Zone One meeting in Otorohanga on 17 May
  • Funding Auckland’s Transport Future – Local Board briefing 20 May
  • Unitary Plan information display in Station Square, Newmarket on 20 May
  • Community Development and Partnerships monthly catch up with the portfolio holders
  • GLBA committee meeting
  • Ponsonby Road Master Plan – Option Development Workshop 22 May
  • Central Joint Funding Committee 23 May
  • Discussion forums with Geoff Lawler – Director of City Planning and Infrastructure – City of Melbourne
  • Unitary Plan information display at the Leys Institute Library on 28 May
  • Placemakers meeting hosted by Waterfront Auckland
  • Waitemata Local Board workshop on 28 May
  • Unitary Plan information display at the Grey Lynn Community Centre on 28 May
  • Meeting to discuss the Board’s Funding Auckland’s Future submission
  • Meeting with Alison Sutton from COMET to discuss Education Snapshot
  • Meeting with community portfolio holders to discuss Waitemata Local Board’s community centre operational subsidies 2013/2014
  • Waitemata Local Board Grants Committee on 30 May
  • Briefing session by Auckland Council Property Limited to Local Board members on ACPL’s portfolio review, process for disposal and acquisition role
  • Transport portfolio monthly catch up with Auckland Transport
  • Fortnightly catch up on the Ponsonby Road master plan progress
  • Auckland Neighbourhood Planning Task Group meeting on 31 May with Roger Blakeley

Events and functions

During May I attended:

  • NZ Music Commission launch of NZ Music Month on Lorne Street on 1 May
  • Cycle Action’s Associations Breakfast at the Auckland Art GalleryPt resolution Bridge cycle channel
  • Opening of All Fresco Art Festival at the invitation of KBA and First Thursday events on K’rd on 2 May
  • Fairtrade’s  Fairly Funny:  a lunchtime comedy for fairtrade fortnight (at the invitation of Fairtrade NZ) on 3 May
  • Oxfam’s Biggest Coffee Break on 6 May
  • Herne Bay Residents Association AGM on 8 May
  • Growing Sustainable Communities – How to establish and maintain a Transition Town group workshop at the GLCC on 12 May
  • Citizenship ceremony on 13 May at the Auckland Town Hall
  • Newmarket Community Committee Unitary Plan presentation and meeting 17 May
  • Official opening of Pt Resolution Bridge on 21 May (including the installation of a cycle gutter –see photo)
  • Council hosted one day event: Lifting our Game – Thriving Neighbourhoods in Action
  • Transport Forum hosted by Puketapapa Local Board
  • Breast Cancer Breakfast at Sky City at the invitation of the Mayoress
  • Sustainable Business Network AGM on 29 May (I am a member of SBN)
  • Good Citizen Awards presentation evening on 30 May

Congratulations to all those individuals and groups acknowledged at the Good Citizen Awards for their outstanding voluntary contribution to the community.Waitemata Local Board Good Citizen Awards

Getting parking right for Auckland

This post was writtten for  Auckland Council’s Unitary Plan shapeauckland website.

How we regulate, control and plan for parking has a huge impact on Auckland’s urban design, the environment, housing affordability and our transport.

The subject provokes strong opinions and calls for free parking. Many decisions about parking have been based on myths, false assumptions and poor evidence. When defining issues in our city as “parking problems”, as “experts” we turn to more parking as the solution.

Regulations made with good intentions, have led to poor results, holding back our city’s potential.

We now have the opportunity, through the Unitary Plan, to put in place a best-practice approach to car parking that has the potential to unleash economic, social and environmental benefits.

UCLA economist Dr Donald Shoup (author of The High Cost of Free Parking) extensively studied parking as a key link between transportation and land use, with important consequences for cities, the economy and the environment. His thinking influenced Auckland Transport’s proposal for a city centre parking zone (implemented late 2012) with the aim of better managing on-street parking as a finite resource competing for other transport priorities. The scheme applies “demand-responsive pricing” and includes the removal of time restrictions, increased on-street parking prices and extended paid parking until 10pm.

It’s early days but all indications are pointing to success with greater availability of parking, a reduction in tickets and more casual visitors. The city also benefited from reduced maintenance costs with 62 per cent of parking poles removed. Other business centres are now looking at applying similar principles to free up on-street parking for customers.

Parking seminarAt a Getting Parking Right for Auckland seminar in April [hosted by the Waitemata Local Board and AECOM] we heard that parking supply is not the problem, rather poorly managed oversupply. A total of 80 per cent of off-street parking is privately owned, which hinders its effective use. For example, minimum parking quantities in our current district plans means some car parks are only used during the day by commuters and shoppers while other car parks are used only at night for entertainment. Using land for empty car parks is hugely wasteful.

Traditional city requirements to include car parking with affordable housing have also been a major barrier to higher-density developments as a car park is not always required by inner-city residents.

Parking in the draft Unitary Plan

So how is the draft Unitary Plan shaping up when it comes to car parking requirements? The plan requires that car parking be managed to support:

  • intensification in and around the city centre, metropolitan, town and local centres and within mixed-use corridors
  • the safe and efficient operation of the transport network
  • the use of more sustainable transport options including public transport, cycling and walking
  • the economic activity of businesses
  • efficient use of land

It proposes that maximum quantities (with no minimums) apply in and around:

  • City centre fringe area
  • Centres zones: metropolitan, town, local
  • Mixed-use zone
  • Terrace housing and apartment buildings zone

Everywhere else minimum quantities apply with no maximums – except for offices (to discourage “out-of-centre” development motivated by the ability to provide parking).

The rationale is that in and around centres, maximums and no minimums supports intensification and public transport. Elsewhere the planners have explained that minimums are required as they are less willing to rely on the market to meet parking needs and are more concerned with the effects of “parking overspill”.

The removal of minimum quantities around town centres but retaining them for new developments appears to be a solution for today’s lack of public transport. But it creates a problem for future generations who will have to deal with the oversupply of parking and poor land use (plus the uneconomic bundling of car parking costs with housing).

The rationale for controlling the effect of parking overspill is poorly thought through. Instead we should allow the market to provide the right level of parking, allowing for overspill onto surrounding streets is a good use of otherwise empty road space. If that space reaches capacity – as has happened in our city fringe suburbs – the response should be to better manage the on street parking, for example, with a residents’ parking scheme.

When providing feedback on the draft Unitary Plan’s parking requirements, take the time to consider the evidence that emerges when parking is stripped back. Cities around the world are taking a different approach and being richly rewarded.

Monthly Board Report May 2013

This report covers my activities from 1 April – 30 April 2013 and is reported on at the May Waitemata Local Board Meeting

Portfolio reports

Community portfolio

As well as our monthly catch up with community development (quarterly update from CDS is attached to the Board’s agenda) we had a cluster meeting with other central community portfolio holders. We met with Richard Butler, Community Development Manager, Central who took us through recent restructuring that is intended to put CDS in a better position to deliver on actual projects to achieve community outcomes and to provide a focus on delivering better services to local boards.

Community-led development

During April we have been energised in community development by the visit of Jim Diers, previously the Director, Department of Neighbourhoods at Seattle City Council.

Jim talks about the crisis of democracy and the need to not just engage with community but to build community by going out to the people. He has many suggestions for moving towards a partnership with the community that a far wider network of people can respond to. For example getting people involved through a “project party” not a meeting and providing matching funding for community projects.  I think we can learn a great deal from Jim’s experience and how we can make democracy work effectively by ensuring planning is done by communities.

A joint workshop was held for local boards and the governing body on 22 April where Jim Diers was invited to share his experiences from Seattle.  The workshop was also an opportunity to provide early feedback on how the proposed draft community development principles might be practically applied across local board and governing body decision-making roles, and in the day-to-day activities across council generally.    Thriving communities – the draft strategic action plan that includes the Council’s community development principles – is due to be released in June.

I am also on the Auckland Neighbourhood Planning Task Group convened by Roger Blakely that is looking to promote neighbourhood planning and implementation across Auckland Council in order to enhance community-driven planning and neighbourhood self-help projects.  Members of the group met with Jim and representatives from Inspiring Communities to discuss neighbourhood planning.

 Feedback on the Point Chevalier Pasadena Community year 1-8 Schooling options

The community portfolio made a joint submission with the Albert -Eden Local Board regarding the Ministry of Education’s proposals arising from the increasing roll at Point Chevalier due to population growth, changing demographics and the school’s popularity.  The proposals look at options for Point Chevalier School and Pasadena Intermediate School that have part of their zones within our Board area.  A copy of the letter is attached as ATTACHMENT A (refer page 317 of the agenda).

Good Citizen Awards

The nomination period for the awards was extended to 26 April to ensure there was plenty of time to recognise and reward those who have made a significant voluntary contribution in the Waitemata Local Board area. Judging will take place in May with the awards ceremony on 31 May.

Transport Portfolio

The Transport portfolio monthly briefing with Auckland Transport took place on 24 April. We covered:

  • Updates on Local board capex projects (Great North Road/Ponsonby Road Intersection and Bowen Avenue/Kitchener Street/Victoria Street East intersection )
  • Richmond Road Safety Action Plan
  • Parking issues in Parnell, St Marys Bay, Freemans Bay and Eden Terrace

Full details of current proposals and issues are outlined in Auckland Transport’s monthly report attached to the Board agenda. (refer page 61)

What price safety?

Great North Road intersection One of our local board capex projects is to improve cycling safety at the intersection of Great North Road and Ponsonby Road. Cyclists approaching the intersection on Great North Road heading east are forced in to a pinch point as the lanes increase from two to three and the shared bus lane disappears.

Cyclists currently either mount the pavement to avoid being stuck at the back of a queue of buses or get pushed into a lane of traffic. We have proposed that an advance stop box be installed with a feeder lane.

Road corridor operations investigations have concluded that to add a cycle feeder lane to this intersection a vehicle lane would have to be removed. They have advised that the removal of one lane for general traffic would increase delays in the peak from 73 seconds to 206 seconds. There would also be an impact on PT unless one of the lanes becomes a bus lane.

Auckland Transport have advised that they do not recommend any option that will increase motorist delays without a more strategic assessment of the overall impact of re-prioritising road space.

Auckland Transport is therefore going to look at installing a cycle stop box only.

My personal view is that we cannot continue to put cyclists at risk and ignore the safety of routes on the Auckland Cycle Network. Great North Road is currently operating under capacity because of the alternative provided by the North-western Motorway and delays are minimal. There is huge potential to increase cycle trips by improving cycling infrastructure on the Great North Road ridge at relatively minor inconvenience to drivers.  I would therefore like us as a Board to push for the reprioritisation of road space to accommodate all modes of transport.

Getting parking right for Auckland

A blog drafted for shapeauckland (the Council’s Unitary Plan website) based on the presentations given at the Getting Parking Right for Auckland seminar (part 1)  hosted by the Board and AECOM on 3 April is attached at ATTACHMENT B.

Local Board capex projects update

An update on the Board’s capex projects is in Auckland Transport’s monthly report.

I attended a number of meetings in April to progress the Newmarket Streetscapes upgrade project by Auckland Transport in conjunction with the City Centre Transformation team. However three of our projects are unlikely to proceed this year following initial investigations:

  • Cycle Improvements – advance stop box and feeder lane at Great North Road, eastbound onto Karangahape Road  (reasons covered above):
  • Pedestrian Improvements at Intersections – Pedestrian facility at the Victoria Street East/Nelson Street intersection (referred to the study team investigating the linear park proposal on Victoria Street as part of the CEWT study)
  • Residential traffic calming project east of Ponsonby Road – to be progressed as part of the Franklin Road upgrade and Ponsonby Road master plan proposals

It is becoming clear that it is very difficult to progress projects via our capex fund that Auckland Transport do not wish to include in their current work programme.  Over the next month we will be work shopping our transport projects and I will be proposing that we invest any remaining capex for 12/13 into our well-developed Greenways project  (to be reported on in June following the consultation that took place earlier in the year).

Record numbers cycling

Figures released by Auckland Transport in April show that in March cycling during the peak period (7am to 9am) increased 24.1 per cent. This comes on top of an increase of 18.5 per cent in February and a rise of 9.0 per cent in January.

Numbers are up even higher in the Waitemata Local Board area – this is great news and justifies increased expenditure in cycling infrastructure by Auckland Transport.

Refer ATTACHMENT D (page 321)  for an update on Why do cyclists run red lights.

Other Board activities

Unitary Plan

I took part in a number of Unitary Plan events during April.

  • Grey Lynn Business Association information session for members
  • Waitemata Local Board Community meeting at the Town Hall
  • Civic Forum at the Freemans Bay Community Hall
  • Grey Lynn residents meeting

My impression is that although there are very real concerns about some of the proposed zoning (particularly around the West Lynn shops) and scepticism that Council will be able to ensure good quality design there is conceptual support for the draft Unitary Plan in our area and an understanding that we are at an early draft stage meaning feedback now will improve the plan.

Annual plan hearings for Waitemata Local Board

Every year Local Boards hold a “discussion” with the Governing Body to go through the Local Board’s advocacy points that form part of the Local Board Agreement.

I supported the Chair in covering our transport advocacy projects at our meeting with the Governing Body held on 24 April.   This part of the presentation is attached as ATTACHMENT C.

Ponsonby Road master plan working group

Kobus Mentz from UrbanismPlus has been contracted to provide urban design/ public realm services for the Ponsonby Road master plan working group. We had a very productive Vision and Outcome Setting workshop in April who covered technical briefings on transport, land use, open space and heritage and group work focused around identifying key precincts/ nodes; key transformational sites; and options to achieve vision and outcomes for Ponsonby Road.

We also held a hui with mana whenua to discuss their contribution to the master plan which resulted in iwi representatives attending the workshop and agreeing to a process for drafting a cultural assessment.

Fairtrade Implementation

fairtrade_logo1May is the one year anniversary of Auckland becoming a Fairtrade city, an initiative that was led by the Waitemata Local Board. I asked Andrew Walters, Business & Facilities Sustainability Project Leader for an update on how the implementation is going and received this response.

All in all I am very enthusiastic about fair trade and would love to do a lot more in this space as the social, environmental and economic benefits of fair trade are all vital elements of sustainability. In a well-resourced sustainability team we would do a lot more and aim for an identified work programme about fair trade implementation rather than current situation.

A report may be worthwhile if requested through the appropriate channels etc. but in the interests of expediency I have put down a few notes.

I can’t write a fuller report just now on this as I am the only remaining member of the sustainability team as two left and were not replaced, so am under some pressure in other areas. But hopefully this summary will help.

  • All tea and coffee on free issue is fair trade (all staff areas/kitchens)
  • All council cafes offer fair trade options
  • We make fair trade goods available on purchasing web sites etc.
  • We have offered several prizes as part of energy campaigns that Included 100% fair trade morning teas for staff in winning teams.
  • We ran a  Green growth symposium attended by business where catering was all fair trade.
  • Have included fair trade in our draft procurement policy

It is great to see that steps have been taken to implement Fairtrade but I am concerned at the lack of resourcing for the sustainability team to meaningfully ensure Fairtrade is an integral part of Council and receives on-going monitoring.

Professional development

CAN Do 2013 Auckland: Inspiring Change

I attended the Cycle Advocates Network’s annual summit on Saturday 13 April with Christopher Dempsey (registration of $60 was paid from the Board’s professional development budget).

Speakers on the theme of Inspiring Change – mainstreaming cycling included Rod Oram, Camden Howitt, Sustainable Coastlines and Stephen Town NZTA Regional Director.

I was particularly impressed with the keynote speaker Jonathan Daly who spoke about the politics of cooperation in the age of sharing: a new paradigm for bicycle advocacy.

He talked about the evolution of public space to private space that occurred with the advancement of the car. He believes we are entering the next evolution with the re-publicisation of public space (such as shared spaces)

He urged for the discussion to be re-framed around liveability – what we have stand to lose if we don’t invest in cycling.

IPENZ Transportation Group conference

I attended the IPENZ Transportation Group conference funded from the Board’s professional development budget. A copy of my report is attached as ATTACHMENT D (refer page 321).

Other board activities

Local Board Workshops and meetings

I attended during April:

  • Waitemata Local Board Agreement Review Workshop on 2 April
  • Hui with mana whenua on the Ponsonby Road Master Plan Project on 3 April
  • Newmarket Streetscapes – Briefing on 4 April
  • Waitemata Local Board Workshop: LBA Prioritisation discussion on 4 April
  • Waitemata Local Board Briefing from Ports of Auckland on their response to the  PWC report on Upper North Island ports on 4 April
  • Children and Young People’s Strategic Action Plan briefing on 5 April
  • Local Board Delivery Model transformation project – engagement with local board members 8 April
  • Ponsonby Road Master Plan – Workshop 3: Vision and Outcome Setting on 8 April
  • Meeting to discuss the Former Masonic Hall – Herne Bay on 9 April
  • Communications fortnightly update
  • City centre transformation team meeting – attended to discuss Newmarket streetscape project
  • Waitemata Local Board business meeting in Grey Lynn on 9 April
  • Ponsonby Road East (slow speed zone) Site Visit with Auckland Transport
  • Greenways meeting with Auckland Transport on 10 April
  • “Good for business”  presentation to Ponsonby Business Association members
  • Arts Station presentation
  • Waitemata Local Board workshop on 11 April
  • Interactive play spaces meeting on 11 April
  • Skypath public information public meeting
  • Central Joint Funding Committee workshop on 12 April
  • Community Development Portfolio holders- quarterly catch up on 17 April
  • Newmarket streetscapes project and local board transport capex funding meeting with Auckland Transport on 18 April
  • Unitary plan community meeting at the Town Hall on 18 April
  • Community portfolio monthly catch up
  • Fortnightly catch up on the Ponsonby Road master plan progress
  • Unitary plan civic forum at the Freemans Bay community hall on Saturday 20 April
  • Jim Diers workshop for local boards and the governing body on 22 April
  • Neighbourhood planning workshop with Jim Diers (working group)
  • Waitemata Local Board workshop on 23 April
  • Transport portfolio monthly update on 24 April
  • Waitemata Local Board and Governing Body discussion on local board agreement priorities on 24 April
  • Briefing on Ponsonby Central development application by Andy Davies
  • Te Kai o Te Rangatira workshop part 1 delivered by subject experts of Te Waka Angamua Maori Strategy and Relations Department (Pou Tikanga, Pou Whainga, Pou Hononga) on 26 April
  • Waitemata Local Board workshop on 30 April

Events and functions

During April I attended:

  • Toi Ora opening with the Mayor on 2 April
  • Getting parking right for Auckland seminar part 1 on 3 April at AECOM jointly hosted with Auckland Transport
  • Green Jam youth sustainability conference at TAPAC on 4 April –. I was invited to take part in a workshop “ Pedal Power An inspiring and active session on the power of bicycles”
  • Richmond Road School Fair
  • Grey Lynn RSC AGM
  • Richmond Rovers Centenary post match centenary celebrations on 6 April
  • Consultation event for Costley Reserve on Sunday 7 April
  • Grey Lynn Business Association Unitary plan information session for members on 9 April
  • Informal presentation to Grey Lynn Residents on the Unitary Plan zoning proposals at the Grey Lynn RSC
  • Local Government Association of South Australia Study Tour presentation on 12 April at the invitation of Peter McKinley
  • CAN-do cycle advocates conference on 13 April
  • IPENZ transportation group conference 14- 16 April in Dunedin
  • TRENZ 2013 Welcome Function at the Viaduct Event centre at the invitation of ATEED
  • ANZAC day service at the Grey Lynn RSC
  • Funding for Transport. Launch of the Collaborative Consensus Group discussion document at the Viaduct Events Centre on 29 April
  • Future intensive: Insights of Auckland’s Housing presentation

Monthly Board Report April 2013

This report covers my activities from 1 March – 31 March 2013.

Board activities

Annual plan hearings for Waitemata Local Board

I found our hearings day held on 19 March to be extremely interesting, worthwhile and productive. We were fortunate to have a range of passionate submitters and to be joined by three governing body members who added to the value of the hearings.

I would just query why the Orakei Local Board decided to submit to a number of fellow boards including Waitemata. There are a range of projects we may wish to collaborate on but the annual plan process is not intended nor structured to provide for different parts of the Auckland Council family to submit as members of the public. I would like to see Local Board services give a clear direction on this issue for next year.

Grants Committee meeting

The Grants Committee met on 27 March to consider 18 applications totally $68,573.98 to the Waitemata Local Board’s third round of discretionary funding. The committee agenda is available online. Thank you to all the applicants who came along to speak in support of their applications.

The recommendations of the committee will be referred to the Board’s business meeting on 9 April. The last and fourth round of funding for this financial year is open until Friday 26th April.  (application form available here)

Relationship between CCO’s and Local Boards

At our February meeting we received the report and resolutions from the Accountability and Performance Committee – Relationship between Local Boards and Council Controlled Organisations

It was delegated to the Board Chair and Deputy Chair to work with Local Board Services officers to provide feedback to the Committee on the type of engagement the Waitemata Local Board would like with Council Controlled Organisations.

This feedback is attached as ATTACHMENT A.

It should also be noted that CCO’s are required to report to the Governing Body on their engagement with Local Boards and that Auckland Transport has been directed to hold workshops with Local Board on their prioritisation criteria in early 2013. This workshop has yet to occur and Auckland Transport, Waterfront Auckland and ACPL have not provided Local Board Services with their engagement plans for 12/13.

Professional development

During March I have taken advantage of a number of excellent learning opportunities available to board members.

Re-thinking Pacific Auckland,  Damon Salesa, Associate Professor, Centre for Pacific Studies, University of Auckland – a lunchtime learning hosted by the Research, Investigations and Monitoring Unit.

This presentation highlighted the high degree of racial segregation occurring in Auckland (using census and demographic data) which is not talked about and therefore not addressed. There are serious consequences of this segregation not just within lower socio-economic areas. Pakeha who attend racially segregated schools are also educationally disadvantaged.

It means differences of opportunity and attainment and damages confidence in democracy.

The presenter gave as the number one solution building social housing in wealthier areas – he felt strongly that no development should happen at the waterfront without social housing.

I would like the Waitemata Local Board to ensure it meets the challenge given by the presenter of working to create the World’s most liveable city for EVERYONE.

Innovation Auckland Conference

SOCANZ conference on 25 and 26 March (conference report to be provided next month)

The conference presented energetic experts on social entrepreneurship and a range of workshops on a cross-section of subjects.

Place making session – connecting Auckland Place Makers

Ethan Kent, International Place advocate for the Project for Public Spaces. Hosted by Waterfront Auckland at the Cloud

 “If you plan for cars and traffic you get cars and traffic, if you plan for people and places you get people and places”

 The presentation held up place making as a transformative agenda going through the key attributes that make a good place, describing place making opportunities and benefits.

Natalie Nicholles, associate director, new economics foundation (nef) London

Local economic development – a community development approach for the ‘toolbox’ – a session for Local Board members

Provided a practical overview of nef’s innovative, tried-and-tested local economic development tools:

–       developing community knowledge about local wealth creation, and why it matters

–       building community capability to assess where and how money and resources leak out of local

I also used a private visit to Melbourne to learn more about what it takes to create the world’s most liveable city with lots of people cycling for transport (report here)

Parking seminarGetting Parking Right for Auckland Seminar

Invites went out in early March for the seminar on 3 April to all of the business associations, CBD advisory board members, local board members and a number of councillors.

An impressive line up of experts, including Chief Economist, Geoff Cooper are included in the programme.

Portfolio reports


The Transport portfolio monthly briefing with Auckland Transport took place on 21 March 2013.   We covered:

  • Road safety campaigns
  • Parking issues in Parnell, Freemans Bay and the Strand
  • Eden Terrace parking zone update
  • St Mary’s Bay parking business permits
  • Road Corridor Operations latest updates

Full details of current proposals and issues are outlined in Auckland Transport’s monthly report attached to the Board agenda.


Parking continues to be an issue for many neighbourhoods in our board area. In Freemans Bay nearly all the unrestricted on-street parking is taken up daily by commuters making it difficult for visitors and residents to access parking spaces. Freemans Bay is the number one priority for a residents parking scheme applying the lessons Auckland Transport has learnt from the St Marys Bay trial.

In February we heard from residents of Scarborough Tce at our monthly board meeting about the parking issues on their street. Auckland Transport is investigating a number of options for a scheme that needs to be effective in a mixed use area with high occupancy rates into the evening.

In Eden Tce we heard that Auckland Transport successfully presented to the Business Association on a proposal for a paid parking zone with a limited number of free on -street parking areas. As part of implementing a new parking scheme Auckland Transport is able to work with the local businesses to offer free public transport for 3 weeks, bike hire and car pool software with a travel plan for the area.

In St Marys Bay Auckland Transport is continuing to assess the trial and how best to deal with the request for business permits. One option being considered is to allow for a limited number of coupons for daily parking (similar to the coupon scheme in Wellington).

What is clear from all the investigations that AT is undertaking is that each neighbourhood will require an appropriate parking scheme to be developed to fit the particular community needs.

Road safety

I have raised concerns with Auckland Transport that their latest campaign aimed at pedestrians is ill-conceived and unlikely to resonant with the target audience. The Pay Attention or Pay the price campaign is aimed at young people who are involved in large number of accidents in the city centre.

However what I have learnt from safety campaign experts such as Jonathan Daly is that these kinds of messages don’t work as they are missing the key ingredient of empathy. It is human nature to switch off to messages such as “Slow down”, “Pay Attention”, “Be polite “

I think this campaign also doesn’t  recognise current realities regarding how people – especially young people -choose to move around the city and how Auckland streets are being designed that even work to encourage distractions (such as shared spaces).

Of course pedestrians need to take care but I believe this campaign will lead to a greater tendency to blame the victim of road accidents involving pedestrians which is nearly always the pedestrian.

Interestingly we found out that AT uses a very small focus group sample on which to test safety messages. From the representative sample that we were shown all of the responders asked AT to not waste money on the campaign but to invest in more pedestrian friendly street design.

Richmond Road School

After more than 4 years of pushing for improved safety improvements on Richmond Road the school has been successful in Auckland Transport approving a range of measures.

I attended a meeting with the principal, Stephanie Anich, representatives of Auckland Transport and Cycle Action on 22 March to discuss the current proposals which are either underway or about to start. These improvements include:

  • Relocating the bus stop near the school to provide for greater visibility
  • Installation of electronic repeater 40km/h signs
  • Installing school zone signs
  • Improvements to the crossing layout
  • New markings and raised speed strips to encourage slower speeds

These safety improvements are being undertaken as part of the overall Richmond Road safety action plan which is a local board project.

Promoting active transport for events

Pasifika by bikeI have raised with Auckland Transport and ATEED the lack of promotion for active transport as an option for travel to events over the summer.  For example the promotion for travel to Pasifika was just focused on using the park and ride facilities. No bike parking was provided at the event despite it taking place right next to the north western cycle way.

 I am also aware of the large number of complaints that have been directed to Auckland Transport regarding the lack of planning to cope with the large numbers using public transport to attend events particularly over the weekend of 9/10 March.  AT have advised that their Special Events Team will review all available data and apply the learnings to planning for future events so that the travelling public is better served.

Other board activities

Local Board Workshops and meetings

I attended during March:

  • Waitemata Local Board workshop on 5 March
  • Meeting to discuss Waitemata Local Board feedback on the Unitary Plan & current status of the draft Unitary Plan
  • Symonds Street cemetery public meeting on 5 March
  • Waitemata community facility needs meeting
  • Informal meeting with Waterfront Auckland CEO, John Dalziell
  • AT Briefing on cycle connections to the Grafton Gully Cycleway
  • Coxs Bay Advisory Group meeting  on 7 March
  • Local Board briefing on the Sale and Supply of Alcohol Act 2012 changes to the current liquor licensing framework
  • Planning for Parnell Baths Centennial Celebration in March 2014
  • Ponsonby Road Master Plan – Working Group Workshop 2: Issues, Opportunities and Aspirations on 11 March
  • Meeting with Philip Jones, Architect for Ponsonby Central to discuss proposed parking and bus stop changes on Ponsonby Road and Brown Street
  • Communications fortnightly update
  • Meeting with the solid waste team to discuss the work underway to encourage zero waste events
  • Waitemata Local Board business meeting in Parnell on 12 March
  • Waitemata Local Board workshop on 12 March
  • Initial meeting of the working group on neighbourhood planning convened by Roger Blakely on 15 March
  • Unitary plan launchLaunch of Unitary Plan and attendance at the business and heritage sessions held during the day (pictured)
  • Meeting to discuss Pioneer Women’s Hall redevelopment budget and process
  • Fortnightly catch up on the Ponsonby Road master plan progress
  • Annual Plan hearings for Waitemata Local Board on 19 March
  • Re-thinking Pacific Auckland lunchtime learning. Presentation by Damon Salesa, Associate Professor, Centre for Pacific Studies, University of Auckland
  • Auckland Transport monthly catch up for Transport portfolio holders on 21 March
  • Richmond Road School meeting on 22 March organised by Auckland Transport to discuss the proposed safety measures to be introduced outside the school
  • Meeting with representatives of Albert – Eden, Puketapapa Local Boards and the solid waste team to discuss the next stage for the resource recovery centre
  • SOCANZ innovation Auckland Conference on 25 and 26 March
  • Workshop for place makers with Ethan Kent on 25 March hosted by Waterfront Auckland
  • Waitemata Local Board Community Grants Committee meeting on 27 March
  • Ponsonby Road fortnightly update meeting
  • Briefing from Rob Cairns, Manager, Region wide Community Planning and Policy regarding Auckland Domain Governance
  • Natalie Nicholls, new economics foundation for an in-depth conversation for Local Board members regarding local economic development

Events and functions

The Auckland Arts Festival 2013 was a big highlight of the events calendar during March. I was fortunate to attend the following performances

  • The opening night of The Factory and drinks afterwards at the Festival bar (at the invitation of AAF)
  • Breath of the Volcano at the Auckland Domain
  • Hui at Q Theatre (at the invitation of AAF)
  • One Man, Two Guvnors
  • Urban by Circolumbia (at the invitation of AAF)
  • Cantina at the Festival tent

 I also attended during March

  • International women’s day celebration at Khartoum Place on 8 March
  • Pasifika Festival at Western Springs
  • Grafton Cricket Club’s 150th birthday celebratory dinner (at the invitation of GCC)West Lynn Street Party opening
  • BeSpoke – Cycle Style at Silo Park (I was part of the organising team as coordinator of Frocks on Bikes – Auckland)
  • Grey Lynn Business Association March networking drinks
  • Ponsonby Road Market Day
  • Movies in Parks at Grey Lynn Park on 16 March
  • West Lynn Street Party and Twilight market in celebration of neighbours day Aotearoa on 21 March (I had the privilege of opening the event with Rev Faasoo (pictured)
  • Genesis Energy Whio Breakfast at the Auckland Zoo on 22 March
  • Opening of the Sir Paul Reeves Building at AUT on 22 March
  • Urbis Design Day off ramp installation (viewed from the K’rd over bridge) – how would you like the city to move?  (pictured)

Urbis design day off ramp

Monthly board report March 2013

This report covers my activities from 1 February – 28 February 2013.

February has been an absolutely action packed month as the year gets well underway reflecting the many activities of the Board and significant progress on a number of projects I am championing including Greenways and the development of a Ponsonby Road master plan.

Ponsonby Road master plan

Ponsonby Road master plan At our Board meeting in October 2012 the Board approved the establishment of a Ponsonby Road working group with representatives of the local community, the business association and local board members and supported by Auckland Council and Auckland Transport tasked with developing a a draft master plan for endorsement of the Waitemata local Board prior to public consultation.

A meeting was held on 18 February to establish the working group followed by a site visit and walkover of Ponsonby Road with the group on 25 February. My opening remarks to the first meeting of the working group are attached (ATTACHMENT A).

I am now seeking the Board’s endorsement of the working group membership,  the planning process and budget approval as outlined in the Ponsonby Road Master Plan – Project Establishment memo from Yvonne Masefield, Planner, Central & Islands Planning dated 1 March 2013 (ATTACHMENT B). This process anticipates the working group producing a draft master plan to be endorsed by the Board for public consultation.


greenway consultation event at Grey Lynn ParkThe Board held a successful Greenways event  on 20 February at the  Richmond Rovers Clubrooms in Grey Lynn Park with a large number turning up to provide feedback on the proposed Greenway routes.

We also sought feedback from those passing by as the club sits on a popular active transport and leisure walking & cycling route. The Grey Lynn Park – Coxes Bay connection is one of our proposed priority greenways.

Consultation continues until 11 March

Zero Waste events

Waitangi Day festival zero wasteI attended the Waitangi Day festival at Bastion Point organised by Ngati Whatua o Orakei as a waste volunteer with Christopher Dempsey. We wanted to learn about the best practice of running a genuine zero waste event. We were both really impressed with the wonderful family atmosphere and the support from stall holders and visitors. The organisers were aiming to not just remove waste from landfill but to reuse everything.

Some of the learnings I took away from the event:

  • Ensure events are alcohol free – this greatly reduces waste from glass and bottles
  • Have only a limited number of waste stations and push the take your own waste home message
  • Ensure the waste contractors are committed to zero waste and separate everything on site
  • Target waste at source – all stallholders have to sign up to reduce packaging and only offer compostable plates etc.
  • Make it fun to “do the right thing”. A Zero waste pa at the festival had activities for kids, chickens and seedlings to give away in re-used coffee cups

I would like to see all events in our area that are funded by the Board to be zero waste.

Community Engagement – Local Board Agreement public briefings

I attended the three Board public briefings on the Council’s annual plan and the Board’s annual agreement which outlines our projects and budget for 13/14.

The meetings attracted low numbers which I think can partly be attributed to a general feeling that the Board is on the right track and we are following through with the commitments we consulted on last year as part of Long Term Plan process and partly because the process was very poorly advertised.

The Annual plan brochure was meant to have been delivered to every mailbox. From my informal surveys I would estimate that it reached about 50% of households and very few in the city centre. I think the Council’s distribution processes need to be urgently reviewed and the value of hard copy communications critically evaluated.

Good for business seminar series

Planning has continued with AECOM on the Good for business parking seminar (now in two parts) with invitations due to go out to business associations and their members in early March.

Getting parking right for Auckland – A good for business approach to parking regulation, planning and design

Part 1 – the New Zealand perspective

Date: Wednesday 3 April 2013

Time:  2pm – 5pm (followed by networking drinks)

Where: AECOM House, 8 Mahuhu Crescent

Keynote speaker: Julie Anne Genter, Transportation planner and parking expert

Plus speakers from Auckland Transport on current policies that are supporting communities and Auckland Council on   proposals for parking requirements in the Unitary Plan.

Part 2-the international experience with Keynote speaker Todd Litman scheduled for mid-May

Portfolio reports


The Transport portfolio monthly briefing with Auckland Transport took place on 28 February.    We covered:

–       Parking issues in Eden Tce, Parnell and Freemans Bay

–       Sarawia railway crossing options

–       Local Board capex fund – pedestrian facilities on Victoria/Nelson Streets

Full details of current proposals and issues are outlined in Auckland Transport’s monthly report attached to the Board agenda.  


The following is the current update from Auckland Transport regarding the parking issues in Freemans Bay:

Auckland Transport and Waitemata Local Board have received numerous complaints in regard to parking issues in Freemans Bay. This has increased since the 2 hour parking zone trial in St Mary’s Bay was implemented in July 2012.  Most of the complaints relate to a lack of on-street parking for residents with local business workers and commuters seen as taking up the spaces for most of the day.

Auckland Transport wished to monitor the first 6 months of the St Marys Bay trial before looking at alternative parking options for Freemans Bay; this has enabled it to more fully understand the effect of the St Marys Bay zone on not only that suburb but also the surrounding suburbs such as Freemans Bay.  Before Auckland Transport can develop a robust proposal to consult with the community there are some necessary steps to complete. These include an inventory of existing parking restrictions and a survey to help Auckland Transport to better understand parking behaviour taking place and to assess why current restrictions are not being effective.  The road reserve is a public asset and Auckland Transport has to balance the many legitimate and often conflicting needs of users.  This involves considerable data collection and consultation across a wide spectrum of customers in order to formulate a balanced proposal.  Once this initial work has been completed, the results can be analysed and some options developed for discussion with the local board and stakeholders.

Depending on how the investigation develops, it is anticipated that options may be ready for public consultation by mid—year

Grey Lynn Footpath upgrade

Grey lynn footpathsThe Grey Lynn foot paths and new pram ramps (at the intersection of Great North Road and Williamson Ave) have now been completed with minimal disruption and no complaints that I am aware of. This project was a successful collaboration between Auckland Transport, ARMA (the contractor) the GLBA and the Board.

The only outstanding renewal is with regards to the painting of the street furniture. I am following this up with Auckland Transport

Other board activities

Local Board Workshops and meetings


  • Meeting to discuss Transport advocacy projects
  • Meeting to discuss Good for Business Parking seminar
  • Waitemata Local Board workshop on 5 February
  • Community Development monthly catch up with portfolio holders
  • Grey Lynn Business Association February business meeting
  • Resource Recovery centre – meeting of project champions on 7 February
  • Meeting to discuss CCTV policy and strategy
  • Integrating Public Input into Political Leadership and Government workshop at the Auckland Business school organised by IAP2 Auckland Branch on 7 February
  • Waitemata Local Board public briefing on the Local Board Agreement (as part of the Annual plan process ) in Parnell on 7 February
  • Site  visit walkover of Kent/York and Teed street with AT’s urban design planner on 8 February
  • Meeting  with the Eden Tce Business Association and AT parking officers to discuss the Eden Tce parking zone proposal on 8 February
  • Unitary plan meeting Joint Unitary plan briefing and workshop for the Governing Body and local boards on 11 February (see photo)
  • Grey Lynn Park Advisory Group meeting on 11 February
  • Smokefree Policy Development workshop with Local Boards organised by Cr Sandra Coney on 12 February (I attended with Jesse Chalmers as the Board’s rep and presented on the Board’s experience of going smoke free)
  • Waitemata  Local Board monthly meeting at Graham Street on 12 February
  • Presentation on the Tamaki Drive Master plan to the Waitemata Local Board and Harbour Edge Development Team by Orakei Local Board on 13 February
  • Transport committee deliberations on the Sky path proposal
  • Waitemata  Local Board LBA Public Briefings in Grey Lynn on 13 February and at the Local Board office on 14 February
  • Unitary Plan update session for local boards on 15 February
  • Presentation on O’Connell Street design concepts
  • Waitemata Local Board workshop on 14 February
  • Ponsonby Road master plan working group establishment meeting on 18 February  (opening introduction to the group attached as ATTACHMENT A)
  • Youth Advisory Panel meeting on 18February
  • Local Board workshop on 19 February
  • Meeting to discuss the Board’s engagement on the Unitary Plan as part of the wider  regional engagement timetable on 19 February
  • Introductory meeting with Rachael Eaton – new Team Leader City Transformation (Central and Islands) to discuss concept of “Park-lets” for the city centre
  • Greenways event at the Richmond Rovers Clubroom, Grey Lynn park on 19 February
  • Meeting  to discuss the public art proposals received for Interactive Play Spaces project on 20 February
  • Meeting between the GLBA and planning officers to discuss the Grey Lynn precinct plan
  • Waitaurau plaza meeting with NZTA and AT to discuss the permanent structures outside the new Bird cage
  • Ponsonby Master plan working party site walk over on 25 February
  • Local Board workshop on 26 February
  • Communications update on 26 February
  • New tools for local government seminar  on 27 February
  • Presentation to the CBD Advisory Board on the Board’s redevelopment plans for Pioneer Women’s and Ellen Melville Hall on 27 February (refer ATTACHMENT C)
  • Transport Portfolio monthly update with Auckland Transport on 28 February
  • Briefing the Waitemata Local Board  on the University of Auckland Newmarket site

Professional development

I attended the New tools for Local Government seminar with David Engwicht who is considered one of the world’s most innovative thinkers on place making, citizen management and creative problem solving. He is the inventor of the Walking School Bus, a world-wide phenomenon.

The free seminar covered four unspoken assumptions that are ‘putting lead boots on local government’ as well as strategies to:

  • Influence greater creativity and resilience in your organisation
  • Empower the communities you serve

Events and functions

I attended the following events and functions during February

  • Hum de-wrap party on Saturday 2 February (the Board gave the Falling Apple Trust $5000 towards the scaffolding and wrap on the building)
  • Te  Matatini Luncheon on 4 February  to   recognise and celebrate the four Kapa Haka roopu that will be representing Tāmaki Makaurau at Te Matatini 2013 in Te Arawa.  (as alternate to the Chair)
  • Waitangi Day Festival as a waste volunteer with Christopher Dempsey
  • Cycle Action Auckland Associates breakfast at the Auckland Art Gallery on 7 February
  • Big Gay Out VIP hospitality tent at the invitation of the NZ Aids Foundation on 10 February
  • Go by Bike day breakfasts at Wynyard Quarter and Air New Zealand offices
  • Wet Hot beauties performance at Parnell Pools on 13 February
  • The Pride Parade grandstand (at the invitation of GABA) on Saturday 16 February
  • Great british car rallyLaunch of the GREAT British Car Rally 2013 by the British High Commissioner and Sir John Walker on behalf of the Mayor on 17 February  (see photo)
  • Greenways  event on 19 February
  • Farewell lunch to our Senior Board advisor on 22 February
  • Lantern Festival official opening by the PM John Key and the Mayor on 23 February
  • Media briefing the Mayor for the start of the Daldry Street linear park on 24 February


a)     That the report be received.

b)     That the Waitemata Local Board endorses the Ponsonby Road working group membership and the planning process as outlined in the Ponsonby Road Master Plan – Project Establishment memo from Yvonne Masefield, Planner, Central & Islands Planning dated 1 March 2013 (ATTACHMENT B).

c)     That the Waitemata Local Board approves the allocation of $50,000 of the 12/13 budget for this project ($75,000) for delivering urban design/ public realm services as part of developing the draft master plan by the working group.