Game over for houses

Auckland City Harbour News - - Front Page - By Heather McCracken

PROP­ER­TIES in the way of a planned new walk­ing route to Eden Park have al­ready been bought by Auck­land City Coun­cil.

But res­i­dents won’t see de­tailed plans on the pro­posed link from Wal­ters Rd to San­dring­ham Rd un­til Au­gust.

The pro­posal will be signed off for con­sul­ta­tion when ne­go­ti­a­tions are fin­ished on two more prop­er­ties.

Coun­cil Rugby World Cup trans­port in­te­gra­tion man­ager Chris Geer­lings says pur­chas­ing had to start be­cause of the short time frame for the project.

“If we waited un­til we had the full plan we would never have had enough time to buy the land and get the re­source con­sent,” he says.

“If we end up pur­chas­ing land we don’t need we can on-sell it. We’re rent­ing out the prop­er­ties and mak­ing quite a good rent,” he says.

Ne­go­ti­a­tions with the fi­nal two home­own­ers ex­pected to be fin­ished by July.

De­tailed plans will then be ap­proved by the trans­port com­mit­tee be­fore go­ing out for pub­lic con­sul­ta­tion.

House­holds di­rectly af­fected have been sent let­ters, and some in­for­ma­tion was in­cluded in coun­cil’s Eden Park Precinct Plan.

Eden Al­bert coun­cil­lor Glenda Fryer says lo­cals don’t want to see houses pulled down.

“It’s not go­ing to help the com­mu­nity, and it’ll look like two teeth be­ing knocked out of a per­son’s face,” she says.

Ms Fryer says peo­ple liv­ing in safe, fam­ily streets will find them­selves next to a thor­ough­fare for tens of thou­sands of peo­ple.

Eden Park Neigh­bours As­so­ci­a­tion pres­i­dent and Auck­land city coun­cil­lor Mark Donnelly says some res­i­dents know about the plan, but not its lo­ca­tion.

He’s says it’s not clear how many rugby fans will walk to Eden Park, and San­dring­ham Rd could be made pedes­trian-only to ease con­ges­tion.

“We’re a bit con­cerned about los­ing her­itage vil­las to cre­ate a walk­way to Eden Park,” he says.

Eden Park Res­i­dents As­so­ci­a­tion pres­i­dent Jose Fowler says he doesn’t know about the walk­way and hasn’t heard it men­tioned at com­mu­nity meet­ings.

De­tailed plans haven’t been seen by Eden Park Re­de­vel­op­ment Board chief ex­ec­u­tive Adam Fee­ley ei­ther.

But he says the pro­posal could im­prove pedes­trian flows around the sta­dium, re­duc­ing the bot­tle­neck at the Wal­ters Rd cor­ner.

Coun­cil city events group man­ager Rachael Dacy says res­i­dents will have more say be­fore the plan is fi­nalised.

“It’s a con­cept plan at this point in time. The where and how still needs to be worked through,” she says.

Ms Dacy says the link would form part of a walk­ing route from the cen­tral city, but it’s un­de­cided whether it would be open to ve­hi­cles as well.

The link is funded through the $22 mil­lion Eden Park precinct plan, which was to be ap­proved in the an­nual plan yes­ter­day.

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