Thursday, August 25, 2011

Waitamata Local Board Plan

I presented this submission on Thursday 26 August 2011

I agree that we need to protect our built heritage and character both in our town-centres and our residential houses. Individual heritage and character buildings that are commercial also need protecting and I support the plan to protect them.
• I support the Board in developing projects that promote, identify and celebrate our heritage. I favour the immediate undergrounding of electric power cables and the extension of Victorian lights from Grafton bridge along Karangahape and Ponsonby Rds to the West and Grafton to Khyber Pass Rd, along Broadway and down Parnell Rd. Ideally the whole link bus route should be uniform .[I realise The Heart of the City may have other considerations ].
An exception that I favour is the strip along Park Rd out side the Starship children's hospital the lights be in the shape of space craft. For children hospital can be a traumatic experience so lets create a little fun for them. In principal the older historic neighbourhoods should have paving, lighting and verandas which indicate to locals and tourist that they are somewhere special. St Marys Bay Rd from Ponsonby Rd to Dublin Street should immediately have the undergrounding of electricity and street lights replaced to indicate the importance of this small strip of important heritage buildings.
• I support quality and creativity in new developments but they should be built to the District Plan rules. I support planning for growth with housing that meets the needs of residents however it should not come at the expense of destroying our heritage.
• I support a more sustainable approach to new and old buildings. To protect heritage buildings I favour more provision for mixed use of buildings ,rate relief in to compensate owners who retain their buildings who could demolish and build higher buildings
• I support attractive higher density housing in places like the old Lion Breweries site but we must should ensure that there is ‘social housing’ for lower income Aucklanders, and apartments for families.
• Because we are inner city and city fringe dwellers I support ways to make cycling and walking safer for those who choose to make this transport choice. I support improved cycle infrastructure with dedicated and connected cycleways and improved bike parking in shopping areas.
• I support an audit of intersections that can be improved for pedestrian safety and increasing the number of low speed zones.
• I support a cycleway and walkway over the Harbour Bridge, and the third harbour crossing needs to be a tunnel.
• The City Centre rail link is the most essential public transport asset for the super city and has my support. I support a heritage rail station in Parnell, and the new trams from the Wynyard Quarter to Britomart and up Queen street .
• I support a greater network of bus lanes to improve the efficiency of buses, and the visual signal that it is a ‘bus, motorbike and cycle only’ lane needs to be emphasized to motorists with increased green marking of the lane.
• I support a re-prioritizing land use away from the provision of parking so that the public are encouraged to use public transport on longer journeys into the city.
• I support more events for our local communities and events which cater for our youth. The music in the parks programme should be extended to provide opportunities for youth and consideration given to a summer arts programme targeted at youth .This would need to be worked in conjunction with government agencies . It is beneficial for all to have our youth involved in activities rather than hanging out all summer with their skateboards. however to engage with youth we could have a skateboarding competition.Whatever is done youth must have a say and their involvement will be to crucial to a successful out come.
• We need both the St James and the Mercury theatre in Council hands and refurbished to become flourishing arts venues.
• I support community gardens and fruit trees in public places to teach our children where food comes from, and be part of the glue that holds our communities together.
• I support as accessible Auckland that enables all of those in our community to enjoy and participate in what Auckland has to offer.
• I support the upgrade of Myers Park for our inner city apartment dwellers and developing the Waitemata coastal walkway so both visitors and local can enjoy it.
• The site at 254 Ponsonby Road will make an excellent village square and be a focal point for the centre of the ‘Ponsonby mile’.
• Many of our Park management plans need to be updated to protect the parks from ‘exclusive’ commercial activities that prevent locals and local clubs using them.
• With thousands of new residents due to be housed in the Wynyard Quarter the facilities such as parks and community facilities needs to be assessed and I support the Board in conducting a needs assessment.
• Public spaces are critical to residents and workers alike in the city centre and we need improved signage of the dozens of ‘through site links’ that Council negotiated for us from developers. I support the Board in ‘bringing back’ public spaces through improved signage.
• I support developing a localised plan to cut carbon emissions so that residents and workers can have clean air to breathe.
• Waste minimisation and resource recovery are key components in establishing sustainable communities and local initiatives are the best way to make us all aware of the rubbish we produce. I support your plans to help us locally find a solution.
• I support a holistic approach to caring for our streams which involve the local community being involved. Coxes Bay is a shining example of the Council and community working together over many years and this needs to occur in more areas in Waitemata.