Mac’s not a gone burger
CONCERNED residents may be a step closer to winning their David and Goliath battle to halt a McDonald’s being built in Balmoral.
The Auckland City Council’s agenda for a six-day hearing in June shows planner Tania Richmond has recommended the application be declined.
Mcdonald’s Restaurants New Zealand wants to build a branch of its chain with a 24-hour drive-through and 63 carparks at 1-5 Wiremu St.
The agenda says the fast food company’s proposal could mean more traffic, an increase in people parking down nearby side-streets, a reduction in residents’ privacy and potentially decrease the desirability of the suburb.
Balmoral Says No group spokesman Nathan Inkpen says it’s really good news but they aren’t celebrating yet.
“It’s not the commissioners’ recommendation.”
But he endorses Ms Richmond’s report.
“McDonald’s are pursuing something unnecessarily.”
A spokesperson for McDonald’s New Zealand says the hearing is the best place for the issue to be discussed.
“We are pleased that a hearing date has now been confirmed and see this as the best opportunity to discuss our restaurant plans in further detail.”
Ms Richmond’s report says 872 submissions were received after the application was made in July 2007 and of these, 860 oppose it.
Councillor Glenda Fryer says the planner’s recommendation is quite unusual.
She expects McDonald’s to scale down its proposal at the upcoming hearing in a bid to sway the commissioners.
But Ms Fryer says it is good that the hundreds of submissions have been properly considered.
The submissions in support of the development say the restaurant will bring vibrancy to the area and people also expressed an affection for McDonald’s and McCafe.
“We will be going to the hearing from a relatively good position and will have to give lots of evidence to support the planner’s conclusions,” says Mr Inkpen.
“The key thing is the hearing is in Balmoral – it is a real win, people can turn up and have their voice heard.”
Mr Inkpen says McDon- ald’s will speak for the first two days and then other submitters may speak. • The hearing is being held at the Auckland Deaf Society building, 164 Balmoral Rd, Balmoral.
The hearing times are 9.30am to 5pm on June 8 and 9, 1pm to 8pm on June 11, 9.30am to 5pm on June 12, 1pm to 8pm on June 15 and 9.30am to 5pm on June 16.
Email info@balmoralsay sno.org.nz for more information.