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Chair’s monthly report September 2017

Report (on the September business meeting agenda) covering the period 7 August until 10 September 2017.

Highlights

Local Board plan hearing

Consultation on the draft Waitematā Local Board Plan 2017 concluded with a hearing held on 8 August.  15 submitters presented to the board on a range of topics.

At the hearing meeting we also received all the submissions and a high level overview of all the data gathered through the public consultation process.  In total 158 submissions were received on the draft Plan 2017. In addition, 34 people provided feedback at the ‘Have your Say’ engagement events and there were 11 pieces of feedback gathered through Facebook.

80 per cent of respondents either agreed or strongly agreed with this question “are we on the right track with our proposed local board plan?”, while 16 per cent neither agreed or disagreed and 4 per cent either disagreed or strongly disagreed.

We are in the process of revising the draft based on the feedback and will sign off the final plan at the Board’s October business meeting.

Draft Meola Reef Te Tokaroa Development Plan consultation

In August the Board signed off the draft Meola Reef Te Tokaroa Development Plan plan for consultation.    Consultation on the draft is now open until 29 September.  The following introduction to the plan is provided on the Shape Auckland website.

  • The purpose of the development plan is to coordinate development of Meola Reef Reserve Te Tokaroa, in the short, medium and long term (10+ years).
  • Such a long-term plan provides guidance for any changes to the area:
    • maintain and enhance the reserve’s ecological outcomes
    • respond to needs, concerns and desires of Mana Whenua, key stakeholders and the community; and
    • plan for future demand and needs.
  • Meola Reef is a lava reef formation that reaches over two kilometres into the Waitematā harbour.  A landfill was developed on the reef from 1930 to 1976.  After closure of the landfill and capping, the reserve informally developed as a dog walking destination.  The Reserve is now known as one of Auckland’s primary off and on-leash dog parks.
  • Management and mitigation of the closed landfill which underlies the reserve, is outside of the scope of the development plan.  However, any development of the park requires any landfill management works to be completed before park development works.
  • The development plan actions are unfunded at this stage.  The development plan will inform funding decisions.

Link to the draft plan and feedback form here

Pest Management

I worked with board member Rob Thomas to finalise the Board’s feedback on Auckland Regional Pest Management Plan Review (Attached to the agenda).

I attended the launch of Predator Free Grey Lynn at the Grey Lynn Farmers Market with Grey Lynn local, Jesse Mulligan (photo right) with support from Predator Free New Zealand Trust and Kiwibank. We also heard from Kelmarna Gardens for plans for Predator Free Ponsonby.

The importance of pest eradication in the survival of seabirds was highlighted at the excellent Hauraki Gulf Seminar Taking Flight I attended on 6 September at Auckland Museum.

Coxs Bay playground

The opening of the new Coxs Bay playground went ahead on 9 September despite forecast downpours. The playground is based on a theme of natural play and the fact that the area used to be a seasonal iwi harvesting place. New planting and natural play features such as boulders and climbing rocks were included in the design.  A playground celebration will be held on 12 October.

The renewal budget for the project was $370,000.

Western Springs Outer Fields bush tracks

I have been following up on the poor condition of the Western Springs Outer Fields bush tracks. Maintenance of the area had fallen between Regional Facilities Auckland (RFA) and Council’s Community Facilities with no maintenance undertaken for some time.

RFA recently reported securing sufficient budget (quoted by City Parks as $28,752) to undertake the remedial works, as scoped by City Parks.  RFA now needs to complete the requisite procurement process and is seeking to complete the required physical work once we have improved weather conditions so the track will be fully functional for the upcoming summer.

Waima Street Pedestrian bridge

 For some time I have also been following up about the condition of the Waima Street pedestrian bridge that provides a walking and cycling connection between Arch Hill and the NW cycleway. At a meeting with the NZTA’s Director Regional Relationships for the Upper North Island, Pete Clarke we heard that NZTA has now secured a budget to undertake maintenance on the bridge (photo right – Albert Eden Local Board side of the bridge).

Walking and cycling improvements

In my September Ponsonby News update  I provided an overview of the major package of walking and cycling improvements that are either underway or about to start.  I’ve been attending the regular meetings organised by West Lynn business owners concerned about the loss of parking, location of bus stops and the construction disruption.

 Tamaki Drive cycleway route

In June Auckland Transport consulted on the Tamaki Drive Cycleway proposal from Quay Street to Ngapipi Road.  Auckland Transport’s options for the route where overwhelmingly rejected through the public feedback.  A revised design is now under investigation.   As transport portfolio lead I provided the following initial feedback on behalf of the Board:

The Waitematā Local Board is pleased that Auckland Transport has listened to the feedback received through the public consultation and is investigating a bi-directional cycle route on Tamaki Drive to the Ngapipi intersection. The Board supports this option with general traffic lanes that are as wide as possible to increase the safety of road riders.

 The Board does not support the section between Solent Street and the Strand remaining as a shared path for the following reasons:

  • The investment over the entire route is degraded by maintaining a lower level of service for this section.
  • It is not fit for purpose for the future numbers estimated to use this route once it is fully connected to the network
  • A shared path with high levels of users is not safe especially for people walking, running, skating etc alongside a traffic lane with high vehicles volumes
  • The proposed width of the shared path is not best practice

 The Board seeks a continuous connection from Quay St along Tamaki Drive with a consistent level of service. The Board therefore requests that AT work with NZTA to investigate the continuation of the bi-directional cycle route through the Solent St to the Strand section by re-allocating road space

 The Board also requests that

  • The bi-directional cycle route continues through the Solent Street intersection and that this intersection is re-designed to prioritise the safety of pedestrians and people on bikes
  • A safe, separated connection is provided to the Gladstone Road cycle route through the Strand intersection
  • Auckland Transport investigate opportunities for sustainable urban drainage/water sensitive design and opportunities to plant new street trees along the route

Auckland Transport will undertake further public consultation on the revised design.

 Ponsonby Road pedestrian improvements project

This project has caused a lot of headaches with delays and construction issues. The project is now back on track on due to be completed by mid-November.  The latest update from Auckland Transport (as at 8 September)

  • Both the Anglesea and Brown Street intersection works are progressing as planned. The drainage work on Anglesea Street is now complete and work has begun on the kerb build-outs.
  • The remaining work at Pollen Street intersection is expected to be complete before mid-November 2017.

Meetings and workshops: 7 August until 10 September

  • Weekly Chair’s meeting every Monday morning
  • Meeting with NZTA representatives on 7 August to discuss transport issues in Waitematā
  • Waitematā Local Board workshops on 8, 22, 29 August and 5 September
  • Waitematā Local Board Plan hearing on 8 August
  • Planning Committee waterfront briefing on 9 August
  • Meeting to discuss Auckland Transport’s temporary installations on K’rd for the introduction of double decker buses
  • Meetings with West Lynn business owners on 9, 16 August and 8 September to discuss cycleway construction works planned by Auckland Transport
  • Meeting on 10 August to discuss Ellen Melville Centre opening and planned Community Open Day
  • Meeting with Council planners to discuss the development of a Parnell precinct plan
  • Chair’s draft recommendations run through on 12 August
  • Interview panel member on 12 August for the CEO position at Auckland Transport
  • Monthly Local Board Chairs’ Forum on 15 August
  • Catch up with the Waitematā Youth Collective representatives on 16 August
  • Waitematā Local Board business meeting on 16 August
  • Monthly comms meeting on 16 August
  • Transport portfolio catch up on 17 August
  • Meeting with Council officers and the Principal of Auckland Girls’ Grammar School on 17 August to discuss possible options for developing in partnership the swimming pool and gym at the school
  • Use of social media by Council discussion with comms officers on 17 August
  • Meeting on 18 August with Richmond Rovers Rugby League Club representatives and Auckland Council staff to discuss development of multipurpose facility and new clubrooms in Grey Lynn Park
  • Judging for the NZTA cycle friendly awards on 18 August at the offices of the AA
  • Local Boards sub-regional workshop on 21 August
  • Newmarket level crossing community liaison meeting hosted by Auckland Transport at Jubilee Hall on 21 August
  • Environment portfolio meeting on 24 August
  • Engagement adviser catch up
  • Meeting with representatives from Kelmarna Gardens
  • Site Visit on 24 August to discuss tree planting project on St Marys Road with Chair, SMBA, Auckland Transport and Auckland Council arborist
  • Meeting on 25 August with Auckland Transport representatives and K’rd Business Association GM to discuss poor process and communication regarding the installation of temporary safety treatments on K’rd for the double decker bus project
  • Planning committee joint workshop on 29 August: waterfront and city centre planning
  • Franklin Road community liaison meeting hosted by Auckland Transport on 30 August
  • Domain Committee meeting on 31 August
  • Waitematā Local Board member “Behind the Scenes” tour of Auckland’s War Memorial Museum on 1 September to show the diverse work currently being carried out in order to meet the needs of our growing and diverse city.   The tour included the Pacific Collections Access Project (PCAP) – connecting with communities, Digital lab – collections on line and Basement storage – kaitiaki
  • Meeting on 1 September with the Sustainability squad at Parnell School to discuss their plans for a waste reduction project
  • Met with Sara Stace  a city shaper and architect focused on cycle planning visiting from Australia
  • City Centre and Waterfront Planning Refresh Local Board Input on 5 September
  • Attended the Hauraki Gulf Marine Park Seminar 2017 – Taking Flight at Auckland Museum on 6 September
  • Catch up with General Manager, Newmarket Business Association on 7 September
  • Finance Committee 10 year budget joint workshop with governing body members and local board chairs on 7 September
  • Meeting with Mayor Goff on 8 September to discuss opening of Ellen Melville Centre and Freyberg Place
  • Communication and Engagement Expo on 8 September to find out what department does (covering Public Affairs – media relations, internal, corporate and local communications, Marketing & publicity, Citizen engagements and Insights, Brand & Channel – content, channels, design, Strategic Planning & Performance)

Events and functions:  7 August until 10 September  

  • Auckland Foundation event with guest speaker Julie Nelson of Housing First at Gus Fisher Gallery on 8 August
  • LATE at the Museum on 9 August at the invitation of Auckland Museum
  • Eat Albert Street (link to video of the event) on 10 August (Photo below: Free kai provided by Everybody eats at Griffith Gardens)
  • Vintage Austin Register – Auckland Branch AGM on 13 August
  • Splice cuppa event at Scarecrow Café on 15 August
  • Opening night of Nell Gywnn at Waterfront Theatre on 17 August at the invitation of Auckland Theatre Company
  • Presided at the Citizenship ceremony at Auckland Town Hall on 17 August (photo below with Kaumatua Bob Hawke, Waitemata Local Board member Richard Northey and Chair of Maungakiekie- Tamaki Local Board Josephine Bartley)
  • Margaret Mary’s farewell from TAPAC on 18 August
  • Funeral of Graham (Rocky) McGlynn, RSC President at the Grey Lynn RSC on 19 August
  • Labour’s Election Launch at the Auckland Town Hall on Sunday 20 August
  • PSA’s book launch on 21 August: Progressive Thinking: Ten Perspectives on Housing with panel discussion facilitated by Simon Wilson
  • Opening night of Matilda at the Civic Theatre at the invitation of ATEED on 24 August
  • Modelled on the Project Glow wear runway show on 26 August
  • Launch of Predator Free Grey Lynn at the Grey Lynn Farmers Market on 27 August
  • Lela Jacobs and Jimmy D Fashion Week shows at the invitation of the K’rd Business Association
  • Leaving function for Brett O’Reilly, ATEED CEO at GRID AKL on 31 August (Photo right with Brett)
  • Random Acts of Kindness Day on 1 September organised by Splice ( I dropped by the Splice team below handing out free pots of honey on K’rd)
  • Took part in a tactical urbanism event with Walk Auckland’s Andy Smith to mark the 8th Anniversary of the 40km speed limit on Ponsonby Road (photo right with our “speed gun” hairdryers)
  • Opening of the Corsini Collection at the Auckland Art Gallery on 2 September
  • Attended Merchant Navy Day Auckland Remembrance Service on 3 September at the Maritime Museum  (Photo below with Councillors Daniel Newman and Mike Lee)
  • Meet the candidates meeting for Auckland Central at St Matthews organised by the Auckland City Centre Residents Group on 7 September
  • Parnell Heritage AGM on 7 September
  • Open Day West End Lawn Tennis Club
  • 8th anniversary of the Grey Lynn Farmers Market on 10 September

Gift Declarations

  • Tickets x 2 Nell Gwynn at the invitation of Auckland Theatre Company
  • Tickets x 2 Matilda at the invitation of ATEED
  • Ticket to LATE at the Museum at the invitation of Auckland Museum
  • Lela Jacobs and Jimmy D Fashion Week shows at the invitation of K’rd Business Association

Opening of Ellen Melville Centre and Freyberg Place

Opening of the restored Ellen Melville Centre with Mayor Phil Goff, Kaumatua Bob Hawke, amd members of the Melville family

On 15 September 2017 we celebrated the opening of the newly renovated Ellen Melville Centre and upgraded Freyberg Place.  I gave a speech on behalf of the Waitematā Local Board. It’s long! This is the Board’s biggest project started in the first days of the Super City so there was a lot to cover and many people to acknowledge.   There are many elements to the project including restoration of the tukutuku panels, a new artwork by Lisa Reihana and the naming of the 5 rooms in the centre. I didn’t want to miss anything out.

I spoke after the Mayor Phil Goff and Andrew Melville (great nephew of Ellen Melville)

In recognition of Te Wiki o Te Reo Māori I started with a mihi and tried to incorporate reo into my speech.

Tēnā koutou e ngā rau Rangatira mā e huihui mai nei

E nga matua a Matt raua ko Bob, nāu nei tā tātou karakia, mihi mai rā ki a koutou

E te Whare e tū nei,

E ngā pātū tukutuku,

E te wāhi taonga nei nā Ngāti Whātua,

E ngā Mana Whenua me ngā Matāwaka,

E ngā tohunga toi a Lisa rāua ko Graham,

E te Koromatua,

E ngā hau e whā

Ka mihi whānui ki a koutou katoa, Tēnā koutou, tēnā koutou, tēnā koutou katoa

Greetings to everyone gathered here today.  I acknowledge this place where we stand and the Ellen Melville centre in the heart of te rohe a Poari o Waitematā.

Thank you matua and Ngāti Whātua Orakei for leading the welcome and honouring us with your presence. I acknowledge mana whenua, the Melville whanau and all the dignitaries.

Thanks to this amazing gathering of people for joining with us and my fellow board members Deputy Chair Shale Chambers, Adriana Avendano Christie, Richard Northey, and Rob Thomas together with former Board members Greg Moyle and Deborah Yates

This is a very proud day. We are about to cut the ribbon on the Board’s biggest project that we’ve been working on since day one of the Super City.

There are many people to thank and many significant elements of the project that I would like to acknowledge.  Following on from the Mayor’s words about Freyberg Place (acknowledging the design by John Reynolds) I’d like to add an acknowledgement for the innovative children’s consultation undertaken by Karen Witten and Penelope Carroll from Massey University. Thanks to feedback from Aira, Angeline, David, Dustin, Elizabeth, Fergus, Jaden, Jennifer, Jessica, Julian and Scarlett –changes were made to the design to add play features like stepping stones and a climbing tree (located right behind us).

I am of course also delighted to see in the design heaps of bike parking where previously there was none.  And all the drinking fountains so there is no need to buy plastic water when visiting the city centre.

As we’ve heard the hall was originally proposed by Ellen Melville prior to WWII as a centenary project – marking the 100 years of the signing of Tiriti o Waitangi –  but work didn’t get underway until the late 1950’s. Inside you’ll be able to see a number of interpretation panels with the history of the hall (thanks to Heritage NZ and Beth Connor for this work) . Yesterday on a pre-view tour I read that the total cost of the hall completed in 1962 and opened as the Pioneer Womens and Ellen Melville Memorial Hall was 56,200 pounds. Raised with a 30,000 pound donation from the Queen Street Business Association (forerunners no doubt to Heart of the City represented today by Viv Beck) 19,000 pounds from the Council and 8,000 pounds raised by 64 women’s organisations.   I acknowledge our funders today.  The City centre targeted rate payers – businesses and residents who have funded the square upgrade and Auckland’s ratepayers for funding the hall upgrade.

We can thank the Auckland City Chief Architect Tibor Donner for the splendid modernist design.    Many of you here will be old enough to remember the hall with a crèche, meetings rooms and excellent public toilets – vital to women visiting the city centre.

However, despite a well-intentioned and creative redevelopment in 1996 the hall was unloved by the end of the old Auckland City Council’s stewardship.  It was hard to access and not open to the public. There wasn’t even a sign in the window advising how to book the hall.  The downstairs two rooms on High Street and the main room on Freyberg Place were leased out.

From day one the newly formed Waitematā Local Board, led by Shale Chambers set about transforming the hall into a welcoming community hub for city centre residents and the wider community.

At the time the population was at about 20,000. Today almost 50,000 residents call the city centre home (ten years ahead of projections) so a community centre is essential.  It is great to see so many of the residents here today, representatives of the Auckland City Centre Residents Group and the RSA Metropolis – our nearest neighbours. This is an Auckland project that has actually anticipated growth rather than reacted to it!

I’d like to acknowledge the Council staff from the Arts Community and Events Department, Local Board services team and consultants who supported the board’s plans from the earliest days.

Strachan Group Architects wrote a creative design solution report in 2012 that captured the opportunities to upgrade the hall to a first class inner city community facility. It included a heritage assessment written by Salmon Reed Architects. In May 2013 the budget was approved by the governing body.  I acknowledge the Councillors here (Cathy Casey – looking at you!) today who were part of that decision making and we must of course thank former Mayor Len Brown for backing our project – one of the few significant local Board projects to make it through the budget cuts that year.

Once the funding was secure we embarked on the restoration that has revealed a rich history.   Thanks to Andrew for sharing with us the story of his Great Aunt, [ the first female Auckland City Councillor].   It wasn’t until I heard Sandra Coney speak at the heritage festival last year that I came to appreciate the impressive qualities of Miss Melville and her progressive legacy to Auckland.

The Hall has been renamed in her honour as the Ellen Melville Centre.   We’ve also had the privilege of naming all the rooms in the centre in recognition of significant women recommended by the NCW Auckland Branch.

The urban lounge downstairs is officially the Helen Clark Room.  We also have the Eleitino (Paddy) Walker Room,  Elizabeth Yates Room, Betty Wark Room and Marilyn Waring Room.  We endorsed the ‘hall space’ in the Ellen Melville Centre as Pioneer Women’s Hall. Thank you to Christine Caughey and Carol Beaumont who led that work.  Apologies that the opening has coincided with the NCW conference in Christchurch but I acknowledge the NCW representatives and PACIFICA group women here today.   We look forward to celebrating together at the community day later in the year.

Within the Pioneer Women’s Hall are Tukutuku panels presented to the New Zealand Pioneers’ and Descendants’ Club by Mr and Mrs Eruera Stirling for the opening of the Pioneer Women’s Hall in 1962.  The Ōrākei marae weavers have restored the patu Tukutuku for the opening Centre.    Thank you to the Stirling whanau, Ngati Whatua and Peter Tilley the Council’s collection services manager (Arts Community and Events Team)   .

The renovation has not only breathed life back into the original features of the hall – including the James Bowie sculpture commissioned for the opening in 1962 that was being used as a door stop – but provided an opportunity to give life to new works.  Thanks to a commission by the Public Art team we have a new artwork Justice by Lisa Reihana located on the O’Connell Street wall. Lisa’s first bronze sculpture.

I’m going to use Lisa’s words to give justice to Justice . Justice is bronze sculpture floating above an exuberant abstract wall drawing, Justice commemorates Ellen Melville – politician, women’s advocate and pioneer. The scales of justice make reference to her illustrious legal career of 37 years. The bronze forms the centrepiece of the façade; it’s a strong, singular form with gentle curves. The whimsical abstract wall composition has a ‘50s feel, taking its cue from the Parnell Baths mural by James Turkington. The Parnell Baths were also designed by council city architect Tibor Donner.

Thank you Lisa for honouring the centre with your stunning work and thanks Mark Osborne for the support of the public art team.

While the centre restoration has preserved and enhanced the modernist heritage features like the door handles on the reinstated entranceway the centre has a modern refurbishment including a new commercial grade kitchen, improved amenities, new audio visual system and café-style seating. In line with our commitment to accessibility all areas of the centre are now fully accessible with the installation of a new lift.  Thanks to Be.accessible and Vivien Naylor for your guidance.

Of course it is not just the physical facilities but the kaupapa of the building that the Board wants to get right from day one.  We have a vision that the Ellen Melville Centre is a thriving community hub that serves the local City Centre residential and wider community by providing a place for gathering and building connections, information exchange and community participation in a range of activities. It is a place where all members of the community feel comfortable and welcome. .  The Board has resolved to support a fully staffed council governed and managed zero waste facility with transition to community managed after three years.

Thanks to our partners –   Splice, the Inner City Network, Waitematā Youth Collective, Auckland City Centre Residents Group and Heart of the City who worked with us on the kaupapa.

This is story of wahine Toa .  The pioneer women both Māori and Pakeha who made a considerable contribution to the foundation of Auckland.  The women who fought for equality and the right to vote.  Courageous Ellen Melville who’s portrait is on display for the first time. The significant NZ women acknowledged with rooms in the Centre.  Throughout  the project and into the future the Waitemata Local Board doesn’t want to lose sight of the central role of women and the significance of the centre as a place for women.   It was only fitting that the project was driven by a team of female project leads.

Our huge thanks to them and all the project team from key consultants  Isthmus Group, Stevens Lawson Architects, MPM Projects and JFC Limited contractors working with Corbel Construction and the artists were John Reynolds, Lisa Reihana and Graham Tipene.  With a support team from Beca, Matthews & Matthews Architects Ltd, Holmes consulting group, Ecubed and Plan. Heritage.

I’m going to read all the names out so please come forward.   Homai te pakipaki for:

Lisa Spasic,  Karina Mascarenhas , Gary McShane, Mark Bramely, Les Lewer, Sarah Bishop, Travis Wooller, Yvette Overdyck, Elspeth Gray,  Nicholas Stevens, Nathan Farrant, Tony Munro, Cherie Armer , Vanya Toso , Aaron Hansen, John Reynolds, Lisa Reihana, Graham Tipene, Rodrigo Salas, David Saechao, Mark Kessner, Antony Matthews,  John Brown

Before I make my concluding remarks  I have a very special acknowledgement.  Lisa Spasic, who has worked her guts as the Council’s Senior Project Leader.  She has hardly slept this week getting everything perfect. (Adriana presented Lisa with flowers on behalf of the Board)

I appreciate I have been speaking for some time .  I hope you agree the whole herstory needed to be told and the many people thanked who have been part of the journey.  We know it has not always been easy through the design process, securing the funding, the consultation and construction. Thanks to Shale and those who set the course and all those who have seen the project through. We now have a shining jewel in the city centre that we wish to be inclusive and welcoming for everyone.

Now all that is called for is for us to cut the ribbon and Lisa to hand over “her baby” to Leesa Tilley, centre manager so we can open the doors on a new chapter for the Ellen Melville Centre in the heart of Tamaki Makaurau.

No reira

Tēnā koutou, tēnā koutou, tēnā koutou katoa

Additional thanks

Ateesh Patel & civic events team for organising the opening, Frith Walker, MC for the civic opening, Barbara Holloway & Activation team from the  Auckland Design Office

Related reading

Ancient lava flow inspires Freyberg Place design

Women take the lead on city centre development

A jewel for the city centre Auckland Council media release and video of the refurbishment 

Auckland civic space opens after mayor upgrade, NZ Herald

Photos of the event

 

 

Major package of walking and cycling improvements underway

West Lynn shops Richmond Road planned walking and cycling improvements

Waitematā is set to be the big winner from a significant package of walking and cycling projects that are underway or about to start. Once complete we can look forward to a range benefits flowing to the whole community.  A large part of the focus is on connecting the places people wish to go; shops, schools, places of work and community facilities. Contractors have already started work on a separated cycleway and footpath upgrade that will connect Surrey Crescent to Pt Chevalier via Garnet Road, and to the Grey Lynn Greenway via Richmond Road.

Stage 2 of the Franklin Road upgrade is also underway including new footpaths and cycle lanes on both sides of the road that will connect Ponsonby Road to the planned Midtown cycleway at Victoria Park.   A project on Great North Road between Crummer and Ponsonby Roads, will bring in improvements for pedestrians, those on bikes and bus users.  The Karangahape Road enhancements project includes a separated “Copenagen” cycleway and significant streetscape improvements.

This all means that by 2018 new travel opportunities will have opened up via a connected and safe network.  The “network effect” is already achieving results.  Additional connections in the cycle network have created a 44% increase in people on bikes using the Northwestern Cycleway and a total of 45,600 new cyclists in 2016.  There is growing demand from a majority of Aucklanders to cycle (and walk) if the conditions are right.

The funds for these projects comes from a combination of investment by NZTA, Auckland Transport and the government’s Urban Cycleway Fund and is expected to be about $200m over three years.  It is great value for money for ratepayers who contribute $1 for every $2 from the government. In addition, the City Centre targeted rate is part funding the K’rd project.

However, the changes do bring a period of inconvenience and concerns from businesses and residents along the routes.  In West Lynn I’ve been attending meetings organized by a group of retailers who have come together to work with Auckland Transport to minimize impact from the construction and improve access to parking for the shopping precinct as a whole. I’m on the Community Liaison Group, established by Auckland Transport to continue engaging with key stakeholders through the delivery of the Franklin Road project and to address issues like safety.

There is now compelling data to show that Waitematā will reap big rewards from investment in walking and cycling.  Everyone benefits from slower speeds, safer streets, less pollution, fewer health costs and less congestion, when leaving a car at home becomes more of a viable option for more people.    A recent study from the UK of a quarter of a million people, found that cycling to work is linked to a lower risk of developing cancer by 45% and cardiovascular disease by 46%.  There is also a direct link between safe, active transport and economic prosperity.    Recent research indicates that in Auckland a 1% increase in city centre walkability leads to a $43m increase in localised GDP.   We want to ensure these impressive results also extend to our town centres and local shops.

For more details of the walking and cycling programme, visit Auckland Transport’s website: at.govt.nz/cycling-walking.

Ponsonby News column September 2017

Chair’s monthly report August 2017

Report covering the period 10 July until 6 August 2017.

Highlights

  • Fukuoka Garden opens:  It has now been over three and half years since the loss of the original garden in the zoo so it was a great pleasure to attend the opening on 17 July and to celebrate the hard work of the many people involved with re-establishing the Fukuoka Friendship Garden including the original garden designer Professor Kubota.   A large delegation led by Mayor Takashima attended from Fukuoka to strengthen the sister city ties. (Attachment A Beautifully crafted Japanese garden blooms again Ponsonby News column)
  • Gave the Opening Address at the Economic Development Masterclass Local Economic Development Masterclass; Supporting economic resilience and was part of a panel discussion with Neil McInroy – Centre for Local Economic Strategies, Gael Surgenor – GM The Southern Initiative,  Riria Te Kanawa – KPMG – Author of Māui Rau: from signal to action. A report on the Māori economy. (Attachment B)
  • Two solar-powered device-charging tables installed at Aotea Square and Victoria Park.  An idea that came from the Board’s Low Carbon Action Plan (Photo right with Board Member Thomas at the charging table in Aotea Square)
  • Attended the LGNZ Annual conference as the Board’s delegate 23- 25 July and Local Board representative with the Auckland Council delegation to the LGNZ AGM on 25 July (Conference report back Attachment C).
  • Presented the prizes for an Auckland Transport road safety poster competition at Richmond Road School.  Congratulations to runners up  Jenna Ivanov-Fesien, Mahina Mareroa  Morgan Laird
  • and winner Lily Smith. The winning poster is going to be super sized and used for traffic management for the Ponsonby Road Pedestrian improvement project works.
  • The renewal and upgrade of the upper Pt Resolution/Taurarua stairs and the concrete path from the top of the stairs to the park entrance are complete as well as the section of path between the stairs.  This completes three stages of the renewals/upgrades that form the Pt Resolution/Taurarua Development Plan. The next stage will be the renewal/upgrade of the fencing around the top of the park. This is being scoped and a proposal will be presented to the local board in November 2017 for consideration and feedback.
  • After a lengthy delay weed control has taken place in the Rose Road Gully (Grey Lynn Park) with funding provided by the Board.  Further weed control works are to be completed with an ongoing maintenance and restoration programme involving community volunteers.

Meetings and workshops: 10 July until 4 August

  • Weekly Chair’s meeting every Monday morning
  • Monthly Local Board Chairs’ Forum on 10 July
  • Business meeting run through
  • Waitematā Local Board workshops on 11, 18 July and 1 August
  • Local Economic Development Masterclass; Supporting economic resilience on 12 July (Attachment B)
  • Parks Portfolio discussion – including parks related Community Facilities matters on 12 July
  • PBA Board meeting on 13 July
  • Meeting with Jenny Hutchings, Mapura Studios on 13 July
  • Meeting on 14 July with John Elliott, Ponsonby News to discuss glysophate spraying issues in Waitematā.
  • Briefing on the Dilworth Terrace Housings viewshaft 14 July
  • Attended the Grafton Residential Parking Zone Public open day held by Auckland Transport on 15 July
  • Local Boards sub-regional workshop on 17 July
  • Engagement Walk-Through on Homelessness (Attachment D)
  • Attended the Ethnic Peoples Advisory Panel meeting on 17 July and gave a short presentation to introduce the Board.
  • Meeting with Mayor Goff on 18 July to consider council’s position on remits submitted to the LGNZ AGM
  • Parnell Station visit with Simon Wilson for an article in the Spinoff (Attachment E)
  • Waitematā Local Board business meeting on 18 July
  • Meet the Epsom candidates meeting hosting by Parnell Business Association on 18 July at Jubilee Buildings
  • Meeting to discuss Waitemata Good Citizens Awards 2017 on 19 July
  • Monthly comms meeting on 19 July
  • Meeting with Kathryn King, Walking and Cycling Manager to discuss the prioritisation process for cycling projects including the old Parnell Tunnel Greenway
  • Catch up with General Manager, K’rd Business Association
  • Meeting with the CEO of Sport Auckland
  • Annual BID presentation by Ponsonby Business Association on 20 July
  • Interview with BID programme team member on 21 July for an article to be published on Auckland Council’s BID website (Attachment F)
  • Attended the LGNZ Annual conference as the Board’s delegate 23- 25 July (Conference report back Attachment C)
  • Auckland Council delegate to the LGNZ AGM on 25 July
  • Planning Committee briefing on Commercial Bay
  • Attended the Heritage Advisory Panel meeting on 25 July to hear a presentation on the restoration of Parnell Station
  • Friends of Symonds St AGM on 25 July
  • Handover meeting with Kathryn Martin, Acting Relationship Manager before her return to Rodney Local Board and farewell on 26 July
  • Meeting on with Business Lab to finalise the City Fringe Economic Development Action plan refresh
  • Meeting on 26 July with Victoria Carter and Ben Carter, City Hop car share
  • Meeting on 27 July with officers to discuss meeting planned with Richmond Rovers Rugby League Club
  • Inner City Network Meeting on 27 July held at Studio One with a presentation on Civil Defence & Emergency Management
  • Site visit to Didas Café to discuss flooding issues
  • Catch up with James Wilson, Q Theatre CEO and Catherine George, at Q Theatre on 28 July
  • Interview with Julie Fairey for Red Alert radio on Planet FM
  • Auckland Paths Leadership Group meeting on 31 July
  • Meeting to discuss Achievements Report on 1 August
  • Transport portfolio catch up on 2 August
  • Joint Local Board Chairs and Governing body members meeting with Mayor Goff
  • Meeting with 254 Ponsonby Road community- led engagement group on 4 August

Events and functions:  10 July until 6 August

  • The Road That Wasn’t There at Herald Theatre on 11 July
  • My Best Dead Friend at Q Theatre on 12 July
  • Viewing of a new work in development called ‘The Secret Thief’ from the Lights Out Project funded by CNZ at the invitation of TAPAC on 15 July
  • Opening of Fukuoka Gardens at Western Springs on 17 July (Attachment A)
  • Opening of the New Zealand International Film Festival at Civic Theatre on 20 July
  • Event with the PM Rt Hon Bill English to hear the PM’s views on Auckland’s future hosted by Heart of the City at Warren & Mahoney on 27 July
  • Fundraising Art Exhibition hosted by the Ponsonby Cruising Club on 28 July
  • Commentator with Alan Johnson at the NZ Fabian Society’s Election series:  For the Love of Auckland; Housing, Transport, Doing better for the City discussion with Phil Tyford and Julie Anne Genter. Held at the University of Auckland, Business School on 31 July
  • Greens Auckland Launch on 1 August
  • Film Festival Screening of Citizen Jane: Battle for the City at ASB Waterfront Theatre
  • Smarts Seeds showcase on 2 August at Aotea Centre at the invitation of Amy Malcolm, University of Auckland
  • Presentation of prizes for Auckland Transport’s road safety poster competition at Richmond Road Primary School assembly on 4 August
  • Interview with David Batten to discuss Reimagining Great North Road community –led plan
  • Launch by Cr Penny Hulse of the Rubbish and Recycling Guide “Feeling Rubbish” for the blind at the Blind Foundation on 5 August
  • Sweet Harmony concert on 5 August starring the Auckland Street Choir in support of Lifewise and the Auckland City Mission
  • Labour’s Transport policy announcement at Wynyard Quarter on 6 August

Gift Declarations

  • Tickets x 2 The Road That Wasn’t There at Herald Theatre and My Dead Best Friend at Q Theatre at the invitation of Zanetti Productions
  • Opening of the New Zealand International Film Festival

Ponsonby News update from the Waitemata Local Board

I’m fortunate to have a monthly column in Ponsonby News.  It’s an opportunity to give an update on Local Board activities and news.  Here is my August 2017 column celebrating the re-opening of Fukuoka Gardens:

Beautifully crafted Japanese garden blooms again

Fukuoka Friendship Garden was originally opened in the Auckland Zoo in 1989 as a gift to the former Auckland City Council from Fukuoka City, Japan, in recognition of the sister city relationship. It was a well-loved, authentic Japanese garden but hidden behind walls only accessible to those who paid the zoo entry fee.

Following a master planning process by the zoo that identified the site for re-development the Garden was dismantled in 2013.   Many were devastated by the loss of the garden and felt that it was removed in haste without proper consultation.    A Friends of

Fukukoa Friendship Garden Steering Committee

the Fukuoka Friendship Garden group was quickly established led by Masa Seikawa, Stephanie Hay and Lee Elliot who mobilised support for the speedy reinstatement. Fortunately, former Mayor Len Brown committed Council to funding a new garden at a new location, incorporating items saved from the zoo site, including bonsai trees, paving stones and lanterns.

One of the first people to rally in behind the Friends was Deborah Yates, who was an elected member of the Waitematā Local Board at the time.   Deborah then became a member of the Steering Committee, set up by Council to find a new location, together with member Vernon Tava, Councillors, members of the Friends group, Maori Statutory Board representatives plus council officers. An extensive search across Auckland led to the assessment of nine locations with Western Springs Lakeside Park, on the boundary with the zoo, as the chosen site in Waitematā.

Fukuoka Garden opening with my sister in law Mayumi Takagi

It has now been over three and half years since the loss of the original garden and so it was a great pleasure to attend the opening on 17 July and to celebrate the hard work of the many people involved with re-establishing the Fukuoka Friendship Garden including the original garden designer Professor Kubota.   A large delegation led by Mayor Takashima attended from Fukuoka to strengthen the sister city ties.

The beautifully crafted new garden, which is 2.6 times larger than the original, has a tea pavilion, waterfall and pond and is free to enter during opening hours:  10am-5.30pm (until 6.30pm during daylight saving).

The Waitematā Local Board is responsible for the majority of the ongoing maintenance.  Zoo staff who are experienced in caring for the bonsai will continue to do this.

Replaced baby swing at St Marys Reserve

The small things that count

Through until the end of June, board members were out and about in the community consulting on our draft three-year Local Board plan.  At the information session at Leys Institute Library, a mother attending Story Time with her toddler, informed us that the baby swing in St Marys Reserve was missing.  I’m pleased to report it was replaced almost immediately.

Jobs like this can be logged by calling Council on 09 301 0101 or you can contact me directly.

Chair’s monthly report July 2017

Report covering the period 10 June to 8 July 2017.

Highlights

We concluded consultation on the draft Local Board plan on 30 June. Our final Information Session was held at the Leys Institute Library on 22 June (Photo right with board members Adriana Christie and Richard Northey)

At our June Board meeting we approved the names to be given to the rooms in the refurbished Ellen Melville Centre: Helen Clark Room, Elizabeth Yates Room, Betty Wark Room, Marilyn Waring Room, and Eleitino (Paddy) Walker Room. Our thanks to National Council of Women – Auckland Branch for selecting the names of these significant women.  The opening date is currently provisionally scheduled for 15 September.

At the meeting we also approved the final Quick Response Round and Accommodation Grants for 2016/17 (link to the minutes of the meeting).  We allocated $14,967.00 utilising ‘Local Discretionary Community Grants’ budget of $11,157.00 and $3810.00 from the ‘Community Response Fund’ budget and allocated Accommodation Grants utilising ‘Community group assistance – Accommodation Grants’ budget of $125,000 and $11,190.00 from the ‘Community Response Fund’ budget.  The minutes of the meeting are on the Council website. (Picture right: a thank you from the Indian Ink Trust who received a $2500 accommodation grant).

On the 30th anniversary of the Nuclear- free New Zealand legislation I spoke at the unveiling of the Pohutukawa for Peace plaque to acknowledge all those who campaigned for nuclear- free NZ in particular my colleague Richard Northey, Chair of the Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament (1970-83) and MP in the Labour government when the legislation was passed.  I also spoke at the launch of the Our Climate Declaration initiative on 18th June (Attachment A)

Provided feedback to Auckland Transport on behalf of the Board on the Victoria Street cycleway, Midtown Bus consultations, AT election sign bylaw review (Refer Auckland Transport monthly report) and made a submission to New Zealand Transport Agency on behalf of the Board on setting speed limits rule (Attachment B)

Wynyard Quarter and Viaduct Harbour safer speed zone introduced (Attachment C). The Board has been a long time advocate for 30km speed limit for the area.

The Teed Street Upgrade is well underway. The Newmarket Business Association is working with Council and the contractors to keep the surrounding streets open and welcoming. (Photo right:  A local retailer proposed the wording for this sign on Teed St)

Provided Local Board updates in Ponsonby News (Attachment D) and the Hobson (Attachments E)

Attended a number of events detailed below.

Took part in the Big Sleep Out 2017 on 6 July raising over $2000 for Lifewise. After the 5.30am wakeup at the event held in the AUT plaza I walked through the city centre to the board office. People were sleeping in doorways all along the way.  It was a reality check about the housing crisis and why Lifewise’s work to tackle homelessness is so essential.

Meetings and workshops: 12 June until 7 July  

  • Weekly Chair’s meeting every Monday morning
  • Waitematā Local Board workshops on 13, 27 June and 4 July
  • Auckland Transport quarterly briefing on 12 June
  • Local Board Chairs’ Forum on 12 June
  • Auckland Domain committee workshop and extraordinary business meeting on 13 June
  • Attended the Wynyard Quarter Transport Management Association Board meeting on 14 June to give a brief presentation on the role of the Local Board
  • Monthly comms meeting on 14 June
  • Community Reference Group for the Parnell cycle route workshop organised by Auckland Transport on 14 June
  • Chair’s recommendations run through meeting on 15 June
  • CBD Jobs and Skills Hub introduction for Local Board members on 16 June
  • Meeting on 16 June with Principal and Deputy Principal of St Mary’s College to discuss a range of road safety issues
  • Local Boards sub-regional workshop on 19 June
  • Chaired the Waitematā Local Board business meeting on 20 June
  • Meeting on 21 June organised by Mayor Phil Goff to set up an Advisory Group to progress the WW1 Memorial (Waitematā Local Board rep on this group has not yet been confirmed)
  • Transport portfolio catch up on 21 June and 5 July
  • Pacific Peoples Advisory Panel meeting with Local Board Members on 21 June
  • Local Board plan information session at Leys Institute Library on 22 June
  • Briefing on 22 June on proposed Civic Administration Building / Aotea Square rezoning
  • LGNZ Governance and Strategy working group meeting in Wellington on 23 June
  • Site visit to the Petanque Club in Salisbury Reserve on 25 June
  • Planning Committee Auckland Plan Refresh Workshop on 26 June re Development Strategy Scenarios
  • Meeting on 27 June with Business Lab to discuss the City Fringe Economic Development Action plan refresh
  • Attended the Auckland City Centre Advisory Board meeting on 28 June
  • Albert Street walking tour on 29 June with the CRL Street Response Manager (photo right showing the design on the new hoardings on Albert St)
  • Meeting on 30 June with David Gaimster new Director of Auckland Museum
  • Catch up with John Hutton, Manager Treaty Settlements regarding Gladstone Reserve settlement
  • Meeting at St Mary’s College with Auckland Transport to discuss road safety issues
  • Meeting with Rangimarie Huria, Chief Executive, Ngāti Whātua Ōrākei Whai Maia Limited on 30 June
  • Attended the Rainbow Communities Advisory Panel meeting on 3 July
  • Meeting on 5 July with Splice representatives to discuss programming at Ellen Meville Hall
  • Meeting on 6 July with Gary Holmes and Gill Plume from Uptown Business Association regarding an update on retaining and developing innovative businesses in the Uptown area.
  • Briefing on 6 July regarding the proposed St Mary’s Bay and Masefield Beach project
  • Meeting with CAB Managers on 6 July
  • Site visit of Victoria Quarter with a constituent and Manager City Centre Design on 7 July (to discuss range of safety and road design issues)

Events and functions:  10 June until 7 July

  • Spoke on behalf of the Board at the unveiling of the Pohutukawa for Peace Plaque on 11 June (photo right)
  • Parnell Business Association networking event “Future Museum” at Auckland Museum on 15 June
  • Spoke at the launch of the Our Climate Declaration initiative on 18 June (Attachment A)
  • Kokako café handover event hosted by the Grey Lynn Business Association to welcome the new owner
  • Newmarket Business Association Business Awards at the Langham Hotel on 22 June at the invitation of the NBA
  • Pestival at Aotea Centre on 24 June: the inaugural Auckland event showcasing and celebrating current community-led conservation work in Auckland (photo  right Cr Penny Hulse opening the event)
  • Te hokinga mai o ngā pou whakairo a te Kiingitanga ki Pukekawa/Pukekaroa (return of the carvings of the Kiingitanga to Auckland Domain) on 24 June (photo right Cr Lee with Sharon Hawke, Te Ariki Tamaroa  the master carver Alan Nopera and his wife and Renata Blair)
  • Ngati Whatua Orakei – Mana Whenua Signage Unveiling/Blessing at Emily Place on 28 June (photo right)
  • Auckland Chief Executive’s Forum – Unlocking Auckland’s Growth on 28 June
  • Social function for Auckland City Centre Advisory Board members hosted by Warren & Mahoney on 28 June
  • St Joseph’s Primary School Art exhibition on 29 June
  • Opening night of Kiss the Sky on 29 June at the Bruce Mason Centre at the invite of the New Zealand Dance Company
  • World Press Photo Exhibition opening night on 30 June at the invitation of Crackjack
  • Te Taumata Kapa Haka a Matariki event at the Cloud on 1 July featuring performances by some of New Zealand’s best kapa haka
  • Celebrating the return of Tara welcome on 1 July organised by Auckland Council and the Sir Peter Blake Trust
  • Bring your Own Bag -International Plastic Bag Free Day event organised by Grey Lynn 2030 Waste Away group for Plastic Free July (photo right with Mayor Phil Goff and Colinda Rowe, Chair of Grey Lynn 2030)
  • Civic Reception for the crew of Tara at the Auckland Town Hall on 4 July (photo right)
  • Auckland Conversations on 5 July The Future of Our Oceans: Continuing Sir Peter Blake’s Environmental Legacy
  • Tour of The Body Laid Bare: Masterpieces from Tate at Auckland Art Gallery on 5 July at the invitation of Regional Facilities Auckland
  • Emirates Team New Zealand homecoming parade and function on 6 July at Headquarters at the invitation of ATEED
  • Participated in The Big Sleep Out on 6 July raising over $2000 for Lifewise (Photo below with elected representatives: Board member Nerissa Henry, Cr Greg Sayers, Mayor Goff and Cr Cathy Casey)

Chair’s monthly report June 2017

Report covering the period 4 May – 9 June 2017.

Summary

Opening of the Grey Lynn Greenway

  • Presented to the Finance and Performance Committee on our Local Board priorities for 17/18 as part of the Annual Budget (presentation Attachment A). Approved the Local Board Agreement and work programmes 2017/18 at an extraordinary meeting on 6 June.
  • At our May business meeting we acknowledged the passing on 29 April 2017 of Ken Havill, inspirational and highly respected principal of Ngā Puna o Waiorea Western Springs College for 19 years until 2016, and extended our sincere condolences to Mr Havill’s family and the school community.
  • Opened the Grey Lynn Greenway with Mayor Phil Goff on 2 June (My speech on behalf of the Board and Auckland Transport media release Attachment B). The Grey Lynn pump track informally opened on 24 May.
  • Met with the 254 Ponsonby Road facilitation group and relevant Council officers to progress the community-led design for Ponsonby Park
  • Consultation on the draft Waitematā Local Board Plan got underway on 22 May.  Have your say events held in Parnell, Grey Lynn and at the board office.  Information sessions held at libraries and farmers’ markets.   Consultation closes on 30 June.
  • Followed up a number of transport issues including:
    • Resurfacing on Ponsonby Road between Williamson Ave and Hopetoun Street without any safety improvements
    • Pedestrian safety and footpath clutter at the intersection of Carlton Gore Road and Davies Crescent
    • Leaf collection and maintenance of street trees by Auckland Transport contractors
    • Parking in Arch Hill and rollout of the Ponsonby Residential parking zone
    • Final Grosvenor Street cycleway design removing a large number of car parks and failure by AT to install crossing points along greenway route at the intersection of Grosvenor and Crummer Rd
    • Safety issues with car transporters using bus stops and the flush medium for unloading on Great North Road
    • Parking on the grass in the Domain (enforcement issues are being addressed through the Domain Committee)
  • Provided feedback to Auckland Transport on behalf of the Board on the Pt Chev to Westmere cycle improvements (Refer Auckland Transport monthly report)
  • Traffic calming polka dots installed on Shortland Street (following pedestrian safety concerns raised by the Local Board. Attachment C).
  • Construction got underway on Teed Street,  Nelson Street cycleway stage 2 and continued on the Ponsonby Road Pedestrian Improvement Project (photo right)
  • Community Reference Group established by Auckland Transport to progress the design of the Gladstone Road cycleway.
  • Media coverage included Local Board reports in Ponsonby News (Attachment D) and the Hobson (Attachments E)
  • Attended an event to mark Word Fair Trade Day at Albert Park organised by a student Christine Zhang (Photo right with Christine and Julie Anne Genter MP).  Auckland became a Fairtrade Region in 2012.

Meetings and workshops attended:

  • Weekly Chair’s meeting every Monday morning
  • Ponsonby Business Association monthly board meetings on 4 May and 8 June
  • Uptown Business Association presentation to the Local Board to discuss BID obligations on 4 May
  • Site visits to Wood Street and Hakanoa Street to discuss constituent issues on 5 May
  • Panuku discussion with local board members regarding urban development tools on 8 May
  • Local Board Chairs’ Forum on 8 May
  • Waitematā Local Board workshops on 9, 23, 30 May and 6 June
  • 2017/2018 Annual Budget Waitemata Local Board advocacy. Presentation to the Finance and Performance Committee on 9 May (Photo right. Presentation Attachment A)
  • Franklin Road community reference group meeting on 10 May
  • Meeting to discuss support for the Santa Parade with representatives of the Council family on 11 May
  • Meeting to discuss the Franklin Road lights on 11 May
  • Meeting with Business Lab to discuss the City Fringe Economic Development Action plan refresh on 11 May and 1 June
  • Meeting on 15 May to discuss partnership opportunities with Western Springs College arising from the school rebuild
  • Local Boards sub-regional workshop on 15 May
  • Pre- agenda briefing for the Domain Committee
  • Meeting with AT’s parking manager on 16 May
  • Meeting to discuss Western Springs Precinct with Regional Facilities
  • Waitematā Local Board business meeting on 16 May and extraordinary meeting on 6 June
  • Transport portfolio catch up on 17 May
  • NZTA strategic direction presentation to invited stakeholders on 17 May
  • Meeting to discuss the development of Council’s homelessness policy
  • Monthly Local Finance Advisor catch up on 23 May
  • Auckland Domain committee workshop and business meeting on 24 May
  • Attended the Auckland City Centre Advisory Board meeting on 24 May (as alternate)
  • Community Reference Group for the Parnell cycle route workshop organised by Auckland Transport on 31 May
  • Chair’s recommendations run through meeting on 11 and 31 May
  • Meola Reef Reserve development plan site visit with mana whenua on 31 May (photo right)
  • Tour on 1 June of the Central Library planned refurbishment
  • Meeting on 2 June with Christina Sayers-Wickstead to discuss the NZ Suffrage Museum project
  • Phone interview as part of research looking at road user pricing
  • Workshop with the 254 Ponsonby Road facilitation group on 7 June
  • Agenda run-through meeting on 7 June
  • Spoke at the Economic Development workshop with city fringe business representatives to assist with the refresh of the ED plan held at ATEED on 8 June
  • One-day workshop on 9 June for Chairs developed by the Institute of Directors

Events and functions attended:

  • Opening night of Amadeus at ASB Waterfront Theatre at the invitation of Auckland Theatre Company
  • Community planting day at Hakanoa pollinator Park (Photo right with Bike Grey Lynn volunteers) and the Grey Lynn Pump Track on 6 May
  • Farewell to Carla van Zon, Auckland Festival director
  • Spoke on the IAP2 Australasia 2017 Engagement Symposium K’rd Walking Tour about Myers Park consultation on 12 May  (photo right)
  • Fairtrade Festival in Albert Park on 13 May
  • NZ Book Awards on 16 May
  • Writers Festival Gala Opening night on 18 May
  • NZ Trio at Q Theatre 21 May
  • Auckland Conversations on 23 May: Manhattan to Manukau – Lessons from New York
  • Innovators in discussion at MOTAT on 25 May
  • Autumn Biking bee adventure on 27 May
  • John Macdonald’s Induction as Methodist Mission Northern Head of Mission on 30 May
  • Grey Lynn Greenway opening on 2 June (Attachment B)
  • Presided at the Central Citizenship Ceremony on 6 June (photo right)

 

 

 

Draft Local Board Plan consultation events:

  • Have your say events in Parnell, Grey Lynn and at the Local Board Office
  • Information sessions held at Parnell Farmers Market, Grey Lynn Farmers Market and at Libraries (photo below with members Richard Northey and Adriana Christie at Parnell Library)

Grey Lynn Greenway opening

On 2 June we opened the Grey Lynn Greenway with the Mayor Phil Goff and Auckland Transport.  Wayne Donnelly,  Deputy Chair of the AT Board was MC for the speeches.  Here is my speech on behalf of the Waitematā Local Board

Tēnā koutou huihui mai nei

Talofa lava

Warm greetings to everyone gathered here

As the heart of Tāmaki Makaurau we’re really fortunate to attend and host many openings of new and upgraded community assets.  The Grey Lynn Greenway is one that I have been especially looking forward to and feel very fortunate to be opening as Chair of the Local Board.  Thank you to everyone who has come along this afternoon.  I’m joined by my local board colleagues Adriana Christie, Rob Thomas and Shale Chambers . We’re fortunate Mayor Phil has had a lot of practice lately for opening new pathways and is able to join us.     I’d especially like to acknowledge former board member Christopher Dempsey who is here to celebrate with us (Tricia Reade sends her apologies).

When I am out and about one of the positive comments I hear the most from locals is how much they enjoying the walking and cycling improvements in our area.  There is a tremendous desire to be able to jump on bikes at any age for local trips or recreational rides.

When I moved into this area over 10 years ago with my partner Paul (here with Bike Grey Lynn) we bought bikes to get around.  Like most people cycling back then we were shocked at the hostile road environment and the lack of cycling facilities.  At the same time there seemed to be some really obvious “quick wins” to make walking and cycling far more pleasant.  Paul first suggested to me the idea of a “Greenlink” connecting Grey Lynn Park with Coxs Bay. This was on a wave of hearing about Bicycle boulevards and greenways transforming neighbourhoods overseas.   I am sure many people had similar ideas at the time as an extension to the existing walking connection established by the Western Bays Community Board  (Graeme Easte just called from Whangerei to give his apologies – probably just as well he is not here as I’m sure he’d tell me I have the history of this route wrong!)

The super city finally provided the opportunity to tackle some of those so called quick wins in Waitematā.  The Greenlink idea was embraced by the first Waitematā Local Board supporting a network connections linking our green spaces and reserves that then became a real project with a Waitematā Greenways Plan approved in 2013  – the second local board to complete a plan after Puketāpapa.

The Grey Lynn Greenway has been built in stages as funds have allowed.  The boardwalk in Coxs Bay was rebuilt and paths widenedin 2014 .  Widened paths in Hakanoa Reserve and Grey Lynn Park were completed last year.  The on road sections finally got the green light with a funding contribution from the Urban Cycling Investment fund.   We now have a complete, attractive off road route from West End Road to Williamson Ave through our beautiful parks.   It opens up connections to sports facilities, schools, local shops and will link into the network of safe routes about to get underway on Great North Road, Richmond Road and Surrey Cres.   And of course a connection to the new Grey Lynn pump track  (great to see Scott here who has been instrumental in that project). We fortunate that the community has got behind the Grey Lynn pump track and the pollinator path planting that will further enhance to the greenway.  We’re already hearing about the wider mobility and accessibility benefits of the Greenway.  A bike school bus has started from Grey Lynn School and wheelchair users are able to easily cross Richmond Road for the first time on the new crossing.

There are still things to get right and we’ve heard AT acknowledge the design and consultation issues on one section.  Auckland Council also has a path section in Coxs Bay to finish off that got held up by the  resource consent.  I’m confident that we’ll work through these issues with AT and the community so that everyone can enjoy and benefit from a new community asset.

We’re also looking forward to working with AT on our next Greenway project to open up the old Parnell train tunnel – but more of that another day!

I’d like to end with the many thanks in order.

Members of the project team with Mayor Phil Goff

  • To the community for all the support for the Greenway and for your patience with the construction.
  • To the volunteers and guardians of the park we look forward to continuing to work with you into the future to further enhance the greenway.
  • To the advocates for who have been unwavering in the task of making Auckland a great place to get around.
  • Thanks to the designers, planners, engineers, technical and support people who all do the hard work behind the scenes.  The thanks on this goes back over many years to David Little and Lynda Lucas who worked on the Greenways plan.
  • The many parks people who worked on the off road sections – too many to name today.
  • The AT team who have worked on the project including Priscilla and Ben (the former and current local board liaison manager)  – the quiet operators who know how to bang heads together to achieve results for local boards
  • And thanks to all those involved in the AT part of the project from Auckland Transport, MR Cagney, MWH and TSL including
    • AT – Ken Lee Jones (Project sponsor) Paul Buckle (W&C client), Ameer Bahho (Project Manager)
    • MWH – Sagar Kariya (Designer)
    • MRCagney – Abby Granbery (Peer Review lead)
    • TSL – Ikram Patel (Contractors Rep)  Mohammed Buksh (Site Engineer)

I hope you will all join me for a ride over once we’ve finished the formalities.

After the ribbon cutting the Mayor jumped on a bike for a ride to the Grey Lynn Pump Track 

Further reading

Grey Lynn walking and bike path opens.  Auckland Transport media release

Mayor Phil Goff at the Grey Lynn Pump Track

 

Chair’s monthly report: May 2017

Report covering the period 15 March – 3 May 2017 (The full report is available on the May 2017 business meeting agenda of the Waitematā Local Board)

Highlights:

  • Housing First pilot project launched (Attachment A)
  • Consultation closed on the Annual Budget 2017/18.  With Richard Northey, I attended the handing over of submissions by the Living Wage campaign on 27 March
  • Hosted the Inner City Network Meeting discussion on the draft Local Board Plan.
  • The Ponsonby Park at 245 Ponsonby Road proposed community-led design announced on 24 March following a public vote on 11 options.
  • Attended the first Local Government New Zealand Governance and Strategy Advisory Group meeting in Wellington (Refer terms of reference below).
  • Attended a number of events including the Pasifika Festival walkabout with the Mayor on 24 March, Westpac Business Awards, the Autumn Festival at Kelmarna Gardens
  • Received the Bring back the monkey bars petition at Grey Lynn School (photo right)
  • Construction continued on the Grey Lynn Pump Track (a community-led project), Grey Lynn Greenways route connecting Coxs Bay to Grey Lynn Park and on the Ponsonby Road Pedestrian Improvement Project (works on MacKelvie St due to be completed by 5 May). Auckland Transport’s works started on the Franklin Road project following a dawn blessing
  • Gave an address on behalf of the Waitematā Local Board at the Anzac eve Illumination for Remembrance at St David’s Memorial Church (Attachment B) and at the Grey Lynn RSC Anzac day service on behalf of the Board (Attachment C)
  • Board agreed the Locally Driven Initiatives (LDI) Operational budget, key advocacy areas and response to the regional policy issues for the Annual Budget 2017/18 at an extraordinary meeting on 2 May
  • Approved the draft Waitematā Local Board Plan at an extraordinary board meeting on 20 May and finalised the summary of the draft. Consultation due to start on 22 May.
  • A small win. There is a long history of women in particular feeling deterred from visiting the city centre because of the lack of public loos. It took a while but following our request signs have now been updated to make it clear the high quality toilets in the Aotea Centre are in fact public (photo right). We’re now working on mapping all the facilities online.
  • Followed up a number of transport issues including:
    •  Pedestrian safety at the car park exit of the new Bunnings on Great North Road and Countdown on Williamson Ave
    • Final Grosvenor Street cycleway design removing a large number of car parks and failure by AT to install crossing points along greenway route at the intersection of Grosvenor and Crummer Rd
    • Safety issues with car transporters using bus stops and the flush medium for unloading on Great North Road
    • Design of a new speed bump on Hakanoa Street
    • Traffic management issues associated with board funded works on MacKelvie Street
  • Provided feedback to Auckland Transport on behalf of the Board on the Westhaven to City Centre cycle route proposal (Refer Auckland Transport monthly report)
  • Media coverage included columns in Ponsonby News (April and May columns Attachments D & E)

Meetings and workshops: 15 March until 3 May 2017

  • Wynyard Quarter Transportation Management Association public meeting at Waterfront Theatre on 15 March
  • Meeting with Community Facilities regarding Maintenance Contracts for Parks, Building and Open Space (Project 17) on 15 March
  • Meeting with Auckland Transport to discuss proposal for Westhaven to the City cycleway on 15 March
  • GPS Submission – Political Reference Group meeting on 15 March
  • Agenda run-throughs on 15 March, 6 April and 3 May
  • Local Boards sub-regional workshops on 20 March and 10 April
  • Meeting on MacKelvie Street with Chris Cherry to discuss pedestrian improvement project works
  • Waitematā Local Board business meetings on 21 March and 11 April and extraordinary meetings on 20 April and 2 May (Photo right- receiving the Bring Back the Monkey Bars petition at the Board’s meeting on 11 April)
  • Monthly comms update on 22 March and 19 April
  • Attended the Auckland City Centre Advisory Board meetings on 29 March and 19 April (as alternate)
  • Auckland Transport briefing for elected members on 22 March
  • Meeting to discuss support for the Auckland Santa Parade on 23 March
  • Woodpecker Hill and Parnell Business Association presentation on proposed improvements to Heard Park
  • Inner City Network Meeting with presentations on ideas for the Local Board plan 2017
  • Meeting on 25 March to discuss the draft Local Board Plan
  • Lunchtime meeting and presentation by University of Auckland on 29 March
  • Meeting on 30 March to discuss election issues feedback
  • Auckland’s Civil Defence and Emergency Management environment: what you need to know and Integrity and Conflicts of Interest sessions on 30 March (part of the Kura Kawana elected member development programme)
  • Meeting to with the Urban Forest Alliance to discuss maintenance of street trees and the urban forest strategy
  • Site meeting on 31 March with Council and AT officers to discuss compliance sign off for the Countdown development (including issues associated with the supermarket car park exit)
  • LGNZ Governance and Strategy Advisory Group meeting in Wellington on 3 April
  • Local Board Chairs’ Forum on 10 April
  • Waitematā Local Board workshops 28 March, 4, 21, 27, April and 2 May
  • Meola Reef Reserve development plan meeting on 5 April
  • PBA board meeting on 6 April
  • Planning Committee Auckland Plan Refresh Workshop on 6 April
  • Newmarket Business Association presentation by Mark Knoff-Thomas to discuss BID obligations on 6 April
  • Chair’s Forum on 10 April
  • Mayor & Local Board Chairs – Auckland’s Governance and Future discussion on 10 April
  • Meeting with Wynyard Quarter Traffic Management Association coordinator on 11 April
  • Presentation by Panuku on the City Centre and Waterfront work programme on 12 April
  • Domain Committee workshop and public meeting on 12 April
  • Joint Planning Committee and Local Board chairs Planning Committee Briefing on 13 April –  How decisions were made around light rail and heavy rail to the airport
  • Meeting with St Marys Bay Association and Herne Bay Residents Association representatives on 19 April
  • Transport portfolio catch up on 26 April
  • Meeting on 26 April with Mayor’s advisor for the Million Trees Project
  • Elected Member Communications & Engagement reference group meeting on 28 April
  • Meeting with Panuku and Councillors Hills and Darby to discuss the future of the Eastern Viaduct carpark
  • Weekly Chair’s meeting every Monday morning
  • Meeting with ATEED representative on 3 May to discuss planning for a Local Economic Development masterclass on 12 July and invite to open the workshop
  • Meeting to discuss the Project 17 asset list with Community Facilities
  • Parnell cycle route workshop organised by Auckland Transport on 3 May

Events and functions:  15 March until 3 May 2017

  • Opening of the Journey of a Million Miles – Following Steps’ exhibition at the Maritime Museum on 15 March
  • “A Plan 4 Youth” Local Board plan consultation organised by the Waitematā Youth Collective on 16 March (photo right)
  • Local Board Plans – central mana whenua engagement hui at the Fickling Centre on 17 March
  • Auckland Art Gallery Opening – The Body Laid Bare: Masterpieces from Tate on 17 March
  • Westpac business awards on 23 March at the invitation of ATEED
  • Auckland Conversations: Homelessness in Auckland (attachment A)
  • The Bone Feeder at Waterfront Theatre on 24 March (at the invitation of the Auckland Arts Festival)
  • Attended the Grey Lynn school assembly on 25 March to receive the Bring Back the Monkey Bars petition
  • Opening of the new NCBT city campus by Mayor Phil Goff
  • Mayoral walkabout at Pasifika Festival on 26 March (photo right)
  • Ponsonby Park announcement of design selected after public vote (photos below)
  • Kelmarna Autumn Festival on 27 March
  • Presentation of Living Wage submissions at the Town Hall on 28 March (photo right)
  • Tyler Street Fashion Show at the invitation of Heart of the City
  • Women in Politics AGM at the Town Hall on 31 March
  • Jam on Toast at the Grey Lynn Community Centre on 2 April
  • Opening of the Mason Brothers building by the Mayor on 3 April
  • Low Carbon Pecha Kutcha – Style Networking night at Studio One on 5 April
  • Illumination of Remembrance at St David’s Church on 24 April (Attachment B)
  • Anzac Day Dawn Service at Auckland Museum and the Grey Lynn RSC parade and service (Attachment C)
  • Opening night of the Comedy Festival (at the invitation of ATEED) on 27 April
  • Attended the dawn blessing on 28 April for the start of Auckland Transport works on Franklin Road
  • Grey Lynn Street Carnival on 29 April organised by the Grey Lynn Business Association
  • Meola Reef Development Plan drop in session at the Westerns Springs Football clubrooms on 2 May

 

 

Anzac day speech: Grey Lynn RSC parade and service

E ngā mana, e ngā reo, e nga tamatoa, rau rangatira mā
Tēnā koutou, tēnā koutou, tēnā tatou katoa

Greetings to everyone gathered here this morning.

It is a great honour to be invited to speak today on behalf of the Waitematā Local Board. I’m joined by board member Adriana Christie who is experiencing her first ANZAC day commemoration in Grey Lynn.

I’d like to acknowledge everyone who contributes to this occasion which is a uniquely Grey Lynn commemoration – president Rocky, the club committee, veterans, Rev Mua, service people, merchant seamen, the military re-enactment society and distinguished guests.  We gather here as a community of family, friends and neighbours to mark the 102nd anniversary of the landings by ANZAC troops at Gallipoli in 1915.

As a migrant to NZ I don’t personally have a family connection to Gallipoli or any NZ’s military heritage.  But I give thanks to the Grey Lynn RSC for uniting us all on ANZAC day regardless of nationality, ethnicity, background, religion or political beliefs.

We have all come together, not to glorify war, but to commemorate New Zealanders, Australians and Pacific peoples who served and died in all wars, conflicts and peacekeeping operations and share the sorrow at the loss and suffering of so many lives in war including those opposing war.

The campaign at Gallipoli was brutal, bloody and entirely futile.  We make a commitment each year that we will not forget, that we will not repeat the mistakes of the past but sadly on-going conflicts around the world show that history continues to repeat itself. We look to our leaders to find peaceful solutions in the face of escalating conflict and sabre rattling.

Gallipoli marked the dawn of nationhood for NZ and Australia.  I give thanks for the ANZAC spirit of sacrifice, courage, commitment and giving which has seen NZ cope through natural disasters and rise to the challenges of our time.

Young people are central to ANZAC commemorations across the country no where more so than in Grey Lynn.  A special kia ora to all the tamariki here today commemorating in your own way but also enjoying the freedom of being out in the street surrounded and protected by your community.

We remember and reflect on ANZAC day together and work to ensure future generations do not face the horror of war. As we remember those who sacrificed their lives and honour those who served we recommit to the importance of peace, independence, fairness and freedom.

Kei wareware tatou

Lest We Forget

No reira

Tēnā koutou, tēnā koutou, tēnā tatou katoa