Sum­mit gate plans

Central Leader - - News - By Heather McCracken

A BID to ban cars from the sum­mit of One Tree Hill at night has gained lo­cal ap­proval.

Po­lice and Corn­wall Park man­age­ment are be­hind the pro­posal to curb drink­ing, van­dal­ism and crime at the sum­mit.

Park di­rec­tor Michael Ayr­ton told the Maun­gakiekie Com­mu­nity Board last week the anti-so­cial be­hav- iour has been in­creas­ing.

“It’s not un­com­mon for main­te­nance staff, par­tic­u­larly on a Fri­day and Satur­day morn­ing, to spend sev­eral hours clean­ing up bro­ken glass, vomit and graf­fiti.”

The gate would block ve­hi­cles from the sum­mit, but the pub­lic could still walk the 1km ac­cess road.

The bar­rier could be opened for spe­cial oc­ca­sions, such as Matariki, and se­cu­rity put in place in­stead.

Ep­som com­mu­nity con­sta­ble Gor­don Camp­bell said a gate would free up his time to deal with other crimes.

It would also help pre­vent in­ci­dents like a Wai­tangi Day graf­fiti at­tack when an of­fender used a lad­der to tag the obelisk, he said.

“Peo­ple are not go­ing to walk up there with al­co­hol. They are not go­ing to walk up there with a lad­der.”

Se­nior sergeant Wendy Spiller said po­lice al­ready made reg­u­lar pa­trols, but it was dif­fi­cult to reach the iso­lated sum­mit quickly.

She said the de­layed re­sponse to in­ci­dents would make se­cu­rity cam­eras in­ef­fec­tive.

“It would just mean we were record­ing peo­ple do­ing crime, not stop­ping those crimes.”

Board mem­bers agreed to en­dorse gates at the junc­tion next to Sor­rento restau­rant, block­ing ac­cess to the sum­mit from One Tree Hill Do­main be­tween 11pm and 7am.

But they wanted to en­sure the cur­rent level of po­lice and se­cu­rity mon­i­tor­ing in the park con­tin­ued.

The plan will now be con­sid­ered by the Auck­land City Coun­cil’s arts, cul­ture and recre­ation com­mit­tee.

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