Board mak­ing waves

Central Leader - - News - By Rhi­an­non Hor­rell

Child safety, carpark space and ve­hi­cle se­cu­rity are prob­lems float­ing to the sur­face at the One­hunga War Memo­rial Pools.

Last month the Maun­gakiekie Com­mu­nity Board pro­posed up to $80,000 worth of changes to the com­plex’s carpark area.

That came af­ter a sig­nif­i­cant in­crease in pool users, and board mem­bers won­dered how many near-miss in­ci­dents there had been in the carpark.

Chair­woman Brid­get Gra­ham was par­tic­u­larly con­cerned about child safety.

The plans in­clude a foot­path to be built along­side the pool com­plex which would mean sev­eral park­ing spa­ces would be elim­i­nated.

A pedes­trian cross­ing would also be moved and white road mark­ings added.

A lo­cal res­i­dent and the gen­eral man­ager of One­hunga Aquas­port ob­jected to the plan.

Ashley Hunt, who has man­aged the com­plex for the past eight months, says at least 20 cars a year are bro­ken into.

“It is a ma­jor prob­lem. There aren’t enough carparks at the mo­ment, we could do with 12 more, not 12 less.

“I did a sur­vey yes­ter­day and 99 per­cent of peo­ple were against los­ing carparks.

“There is a physio in the com­plex and there needs to be carparks out­side the en­trance. We can’t have peo­ple hob­bling to the en­trance.”

Mr Hunt ac­knowl­edged the need for in­creased safety since there are of­ten young chil­dren at the pools.

He is hop­ing other al­ter­na­tives can be ex­plored and sug­gested build­ing the foot­path on the op­po­site side of the road in­stead of against the com­plex.

Royal Oak res­i­dent Terry Daly was also un­happy with the pro­posal and high­lighted the vol­ume of traf­fic that en­ters the carpark be­fore 7am.

“Pool users are of­ten busi­ness peo­ple who would have ex­pen­sive equip­ment like lap­tops in their ve­hi­cles. I don’t feel safe leav­ing my car there.”

The board was con­sid­er­ing hav­ing the carpark gate un­locked ear­lier to al­low more park­ing.

Mrs Gra­ham said the mat­ter will go for­ward for pub­lic con­sul­ta­tion.

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