Eden Park may push again to de­velop grounds

Central Leader - - FRONT PAGE - By EMMA WHIT­TAKER

Neigh­bours of Eden Park hope to know soon if they’ll end up liv­ing next to a large de­vel­op­ment that could in­clude a ho­tel.

The lat­est round of sub­mis­sions on the Uni­tary Plan closes to­day at 5pm.

Eden Park Trust ex­pressed its in­ter­est in de­vel­op­ing the num­ber two cricket ground; prop­er­ties on the cor­ner of Wal­ters Rd and San­dring­ham Rd; and the air space above the bus hub in a sub­mis­sion on the draft ver­sion of the plan last year.

The site could be used for trav­eller ac­com­mo­da­tion, of­fices, res­i­den­tial units, food bev­er­age or other re­tail stores, or space for sport­ing ac­tiv­i­ties.

De­vel­op­ment could hap­pen over the next 10 to 15 years if ap­proved.

That first sub­mis­sion was re­jected by coun­cil­lors but Eden Park Neigh­bours As­so­ci­a­tion pres­i­dent Mark Don­nelly ex­pects the trust will ask for the same thing this time around.

‘‘What­ever re­de­vel­op­ment, commercial or a ho­tel, is re­ally just not suit­able for a res­i­den­tial area, es­pe­cially if they go for hav­ing un­lim­ited night games or big­ger con­certs,’’ he says.

Al­bert Eden Lo­cal Board chair­man Peter Haynes shares the con­cerns.

‘‘Per­son­ally, I’d be dis­mayed were Eden Park to pro­pose again de­vel­op­ment on the scale they put for­ward ear­lier in the Uni­tary Plan process.

‘‘I feel for the neigh­bours of Eden Park.

Many of them bought there when Eden Park was still on a hu­man scale.

It’s sim­ply not true that they bought there know­ing what they were in for.

‘‘Just a few years ago, they sud­denly found a quar­ter­bil­lion dol­lar be­he­moth foisted on them.

‘‘Over the years the lo­cal people have fought hard to main­tain some qual­ity of life – things like be­ing able to get their chil­dren to sleep on Sun­day evenings,’’ Mr Don­nelly says.

A spokesper­son for Eden Park has spo­ken with a com­mu­nity li­ai­son group but is not able to talk pub­licly about its lat­est sub­mis­sion, or any pos­si­ble plans, un­til af­ter con­sul­ta­tion has closed.

Mean­while the Auck­land Coun­cil is work­ing to fi­nalise Auck­land’s Sta­dium Strat­egy.

It pro­poses that Eden Park be used only for ma­jor ma­jor rugby, league and foot­ball games, while cricket should be moved to Western Springs.

Smaller rugby, league and foot­ball games would be at North Har­bour Sta­dium.

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