Monthly report covering activities from 1 March – 31 March 2012
RLTP- I worked with officers and member Dempsey to finalise the Board’s feedback on the draft Regional Land Transport Programme (RLTP). We raised a number of issues with the draft document in particular the failure to align high-level plans and strategies that drive investment with local board plans and priorities. We also noted the absence of City Centre Master plan and Waterfront plan transport projects which we believe should be included as the RLTP is required to cover all transport activities in the Auckland region. A copy of the submission is attached to the agenda.
Proposed Traffic and Speed Limit Bylaws – Feedback was also provided in March on the proposed Traffic and Speed Limit Bylaws. Our submission included a request that the clause allowing AT to make some roads and shared spaces one-way for motor vehicles, also provides for two-ways for cyclists and other active transport modes (e.g. contra-flows).
Report back from 2Walk and Cycle conference 22-24 February, Hastings – Member Dempsey has prepared a comprehensive report back on the 2Walk and Cycle Conference I also attended in Hastings (22-24 February). As he concludes in the report there are several key messages:
- Cycling and walking offers health benefits far in excess of costs (this requires a “whole of government” approach to invest in future proofing cities to reduce diseases of modern living)
- It is important to properly fund infrastructure to secure these substantial benefits (we saw the direct benefits in Hawkes Bay where the installation of cycle lanes and pathways is resulting in huge increases in everyday cycling for transport and cycle tourism).
- Political leadership is needed in supporting the critical development of cycling/walking infrastructure.
School bike tracks – I had the opportunity to attend the opening of Wellsford Primary School’s Te Huanui Cycle Track on 9 March at the invitation of Harbour Sport. This is only the second track in Auckland based on the Bike-On initiative developed in Hastings by Paul McArdle to get kids back on bikes and exercising in a safe environment. As Auckland Transport reported at the Regional Walking and Cycling Forum on 13 March they are supporting the development of more bike tracks and will shortly be releasing a “How to” manual for schools. In the Waitemata Local Board area I have been involved with a group assisting Grey Lynn School to install a bike track around the school grounds. However this project has now been put on hold while new classrooms and a hall development are underway.
Monthly transport updates – Transport catch ups were held with the Transport portfolio and relevant officers from Auckland Transport on 1st March (postponed from February) and 23 March. The issues discussed are reported back monthly by AT on our public agenda.
Parking at the zoo – On 19 March I met with the CEO of Auckland Zoo and Natalie Hansby, Manager, Visitor Experience and Business Development to discuss the traffic calming proposed by AT on Motions Road and the installation of a signalised intersection at Great North Road/Motions Road Next steps: A number of actions arose from the meeting including improvements to the bus stops servicing the Zoo and a longer term plan to provide for parking for the wider precinct.
Parnell roundabout – AT have proposed a roundabout at the intersection of Parnell Rise and Parnell Road in order cope with the increase in the number of cars expected to be generated from the new Geyser development. On 26 March I met with representatives from Parnell Inc, AT and the Parnell Community Committee to discuss concerns raised by local businesses that the roundabout will increase congestion on Parnell Road. Next steps: AT is in the process of responding to a number of issues before taking this project further.
Parnell Station and the old Parnell tunnel – On 8 March Nick Seymour of Auckland Transport took members of the Board on a walk around the Mainland Stream site and to the entrance of the old tunnel. We had an opportunity to see the retaining work alongside the Waipapa stream as well as look around the Domain underpass and plans for the Domain ramps/stairs.
LTP consultation – Two community meetings were held in March to discuss the draft Long Term plan 2012-2022 and our draft Local Board Agreement which forms part of the draft LTP. The Mayor and Cr Lee attended the meeting on 1 March at the Grey Lynn RSC. I also visited the LTP road show at the Grey Lynn Farmers Market on 18 March. The feedback I have received from the community is that the online submission form was incredibly difficult to understand and was a deterrent to providing feedback on a huge number of important issues.
I had the opportunity to discuss the Board’s transport priorities that form part of the LTP in an interview on Bfm’s Green desk on 13 March.
Fairtrade – During March the Regional Development and Operations Committee and the Tenders and Procurement Subcommittee supported the Economic Forum’s recommendation to make Auckland Fairtrade. This is the final stage of the political process that was kicked off in May last year with the Waitemata Local Board’s resolution recommending to the Governing Body of Auckland Council that Auckland becomes a Fair Trade City. Next steps: work is now underway within Auckland Council to obtain Fair trade status in time for Fair trade fortnight in May.
Hearings on the Auckland Council’s draft Waste Minimisation and Management Plan – I attended the hearings with member Dempsey on 26 March as part of Local Board feedback on the draft plan. I also attended the public hearings to support the Grey Lynn 2030 waste away submission. The councillors on the hearings panel are to be congratulated for the enthusiasm and genuine interest with which they are receiving submissions which has made submitters feel part of a robust and transparent process.
Other issues relevant to the Community portfolio – A range of meetings were attended during March relevant to the Community portfolio – these are listed below
Grey Lynn Business Association
Attended one of the GLBA’s fortnightly meetings in March. I am following up on a number of issues for GLBA members including the beautification of the Surrey Cres shops, bike parking outside the new Kokako café and progress on the Williamson Ave Fire station development.
Newmarket Business Association – Attended the presentation to the Board on the NBA’s strategic plan and current initiatives. I also attended the NBA’s fashion in the street event on 24 March.
Other board activities
Local Board workshops and meetings
- Monthly transport portfolio catch ups with AT on 1st and 23rd March
- Meeting to discuss allocation of Waitemata LB’s LIPS and Discretionary CAPEX on 1 March
- Meeting with Kiwirail to discuss use of old Parnell Rail tunnel as a connection to Newmarket (part of the Board’s “green link” aspirations)
- A number of RLTP discussion meetings to prepare our submission on the draft RLTP
- Local Board engagement as part of the LTP consultation at the Grey Lynn RSC attended by the Mayor and Cr Lee on 1 March and on 6 March at the Board offices, Graham Street
- Transport Committee meeting on 6 March including presentations by Cycle Action Auckland and the Greenways Project
- Tour of Highwic House and a presentation over morning tea hosted by Cheryl Laurie, Manager Highwic
- Waitemata Local Board workshops on 6 March , 20 and 27 March
- Regional Walking and cycling forum on 13 March
- CBD advisory board meeting (in the absence of the Chair)
- Local Board business meeting in Grey Lynn on 13 March
- Isthmus Joint Funding Committee Workshop
- Chinese Garden site in Western Springs Park – briefing by Shyrel Burt on 19 March
- Parnell Trust – Community Facilities City Centre area meeting with Phillippa Pitcher and Anne Barrowclough
- Tepid Baths Presentation to Waitemata Local Board
- Delegations to Chief Executive – workshop on 20 March with the Auckland Council executive team and local board members from Waitemata, Albert- Eden and Waiheke Local Boards
- Working lunch with directors and senior team of Waterfront Auckland on 22 March
- LanzaTech & opportunities to support growth in Auckland meeting hosted by ATEED
- Meeting with Geoff Chamberlain and Kate Roberts to discuss medium-long term library development in the Wynard Quarter, the Parnell Library lease and also the Grey Lynn and Leys Institute libraries on 22 March. ·
- EDS strategy workshop for local board members to discuss issues with Councillors and Harvey Brookes
- Local Boards Treaty Settlements briefing on 26 March
- Auckland Conversation on 28 March – 10 presentations from 10 cities moderated by Greg Clark (part of the Sea Edge symposium for waterfront development leaders)
- Governing Body meeting on 29 March for signing off the Auckland Plan – travelled to the Manukau Chamber with Member Dempsey by bike and train in recognition of the Plan’s aim to create the world’s most liveable city Communications update with Kim Reed and the Chair
- Meeting with Tricia Reade to meet the new community lease advisor Local Boards Unitary Plan Symposium on 30 March
- Meeting with Emily Harris from Urban Pantry to discuss a community garden on the Cross Street car park off K’rd
Events and functions
I attended the following events and functions during March:
- Launch of Seaweek at Auckland Zoo
- Try my Bike at the Lake House in Takapuna (an Auckland Transport event in association with Frocks on Bike)
- International Women’s Day Celebration at Khartoum Place on 8 March
- Pacifika festival at Western Springs
- Walk to work day breakfast at Pigeon Park
- Cycle Action’s associates breakfast
- Chairman’s inaugural lunch at the Voyager Museum
- Volvo Ocean Race Auckland Leg Four Prize giving Dinner
- Movies in the Park in Grey Lynn
- Ponsonby Market Day
- AT’s family fun bike day
- NBA’s fashion in the street
- Cycle Style (an Auckland Transport funded event in association with Frocks on Bike)
- Launch of the Social Entrepreneurs School. Opening on The Kitchen – a new shared work space for social entrepreneurs
- Cycle Action public meeting
- Richmond Road School gala on Saturday 31 March