Yacht­ing NZ’s con­tro­ver­sial new site

Auckland City Harbour News - - OUT & ABOUT - TOM DILLANE

Yacht­ing New Zealand is ‘‘clos­ing in’’ on a con­tro­ver­sial sail­ing fa­cil­ity site on Auck­land’s Hibis­cus Coast, ac­cord­ing to Auck­land Coun­cil chief ex­ec­u­tive officer Dean Kimp­ton.

In an email to Auck­land Coun­cil on Septem­ber 19, Kimp­ton wrote: ‘‘Seems like YNZ is clos­ing in on us­ing the Ham­mer­head site. [Lease­holder] Jim Speedy is open to it … It will be ini­tial due dili­gence on what planning con­straints might ex­ist so we can ad­vise them as ap­pli­cant. I don’t want to move too fast in case we go around in cir­cles.’’

The email was ob­tained through a re­quest un­der the Lo­cal Gov­ern­ment Of­fi­cial In­for­ma­tion and Meet­ings Act and con­firms lo­cal Hibis­cus Coast busi­ness­man Jim Speedy as the pri­vate lease­holder YNZ is in talks with for a sail­ing fa­cil­ity.

The Ham­mer­head site re­ferred to by Kimp­ton is a 700 square me­tre grass plot of land right be­side the Gulf Har­bour ferry ter­mi­nal which Speedy has se­cured the lease for. Auck­land coun­cil­lor for the Al­bany ward John Wat­son de­scribed the Ham­mer­head land as ‘‘the most valu­able land in all of the Hibis­cus Coast’’.

NZ’s in­ter­est in Gulf Har­bour was re­ported by the North Shore Times (Oc­to­ber 11) af­ter six years of con­tro­ver­sial at­tempts to ob­tain a lease site for a sail­ing fa­cil­ity on Taka­puna Beach.

At the time, fel­low Al­bany coun­cil­lor Wayne Walker was highly crit­i­cal of po­ten­tial be­hindthe-scenes dis­cus­sions be­tween Auck­land Coun­cil and YNZ ex­ec­u­tives and busi­ness­man Speedy.

YNZ aban­doned its Taka­puna ef­forts in July, af­ter it failed to ob­tain land-owner con­sent from the Devon­port-Taka­puna Lo­cal Board for a 1000sqm lease on Taka­puna Beach re­serve land. How­ever, the length of time of Auck­land Coun­cil and YNZ’s in­ter­est in Gulf Har­bour as a po­ten­tial sail­ing fa­cil­ity site was re­vealed through the re­cently ob­tained LGOIMA.

In an email sent on Jan­uary 21 to Auck­land Coun­cil de­vel­op­ment pro­gramme lead Cather­ine Ed­meades, Kimp­ton cites Gulf Har­bour as a site worth in­ves­ti­gat­ing for a YNZ sail­ing fa­cil­ity.

In a num­ber of fur­ther emails be­tween Kimp­ton and Ed­meades lead­ing up to YNZ’s land-owner con­sent ap­pli­ca­tion to the Devon­port-Taka­puna Lo­cal Board in July, it is clear that Gulf Har­bour was be­ing con­sid­ered as a back up op­tion for a YNZ fa­cil­ity.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from New Zealand

© PressReader. All rights reserved.