Res­i­dents rue park’s cash woes

Auckland City Harbour News - - News - By Jo­ce­lyn Rein

UN­FIN­ISHED busi­ness at Grey Lynn Park has got res­i­dents won­der­ing where all the money’s gone.

At a re­cent West­ern Bays Com­mu­nity Board meet­ing Grey Lynn lo­cal Kris MacPher­son asked why park im­prove­ment projects were be­ing left un­fin­ished or not even started.

A con­cept de­sign plan for the pop­u­lar in­ner city park was de­vel­oped by the coun­cil in 2004, with about $500,000 be­ing ear­marked for the up­grades.

Al­though the first two years of the plan were im­ple­mented, fund­ing has since stalled, leav­ing foot­paths un­fin­ished, park­ing ar­eas un­safe, and play­grounds in­com­plete.

“We’re just dis­ap­pointed re­ally,” says Ms MacPher­son, a land­scape ar­chi­tect and mem­ber of the Grey Lynn Park Ad­vi­sory Group.

“For the last two years we’ve ba­si­cally been re­peat­ing our­selves.”

Ms MacPher­son says gen­eral main­te­nance of foot­paths is a key is­sue, with ex­ist­ing paths be­ing ne­glected and new foot­paths be­ing left unfi

She says as well as gen­eral main­te­nance, projects such as the new play­ground and fly­ing fox haven’t been com­pleted.

The 34 new carparks at the park’s El­gin St en­trance have not been fol­lowed with a traf­fic man­age­ment plan and those park­ing on the op­po­site side of El­gin St must ne­go­ti­ate speed­sters as they en­ter the park.

“At some point there is go­ing to be an ac­ci­dent. It’s sort of like Rus­sian roulette.”

She says in the mean­time the coun­cil has been pro­mot­ing the park as a gath­er­ing place for events, mean­ing it is busier than ever.

Com­mu­nity board chair­man Bruce Kilmis­ter says they are con­cerned the coun­cil is not go­ing for­ward with the planned works and agrees there needs to be a higher de­gree of main­te­nance in the well-used park.

Coun­cil­lor Graeme Easte says the flow of funds has been stopped be­cause of a change in the way parks are funded.

und­ing now comes from a city-wide level rather than from the parks’ in­di­vid­ual ward and he says Grey Lynn Park has been over­looked in the changeover.

Mr Easte says there has been no de­ci­sion made to can­cel fund­ing for the park.

“It looks like they’ve dropped the ball on this.”

Mr Kilmis­ter says coun­cil of­fi­cers are in­ves­ti­gat­ing the rea­sons be­hind the stalled de­vel­op­ments and will re­port back to the com­mu­nity board in June.

Photo: JA­SON OXENHAM

Beaten track: Kris MacPher­son is dis­ap­pointed de­vel­op­ments in Grey Lynn Park have come to a grind­ing halt.

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