Time run­ning out for wake­board park

Central Leader - - OUT & ABOUT - TOM CARNEGIE

‘‘It is our view that it would be an in­jus­tice to not al­low the pub­lic the op­por­tu­nity for a pub­lic in­quiry.’’

The fu­ture of Auck­land’s first wake­board­ing park is in murky wa­ter.

Rixen Cable­ways NZ opened a two-way cable park in One­hunga la­goon in March 2016 un­der a tem­po­rary 40-day op­er­a­tional pe­riod.

The trial pe­riod, granted by the Maun­gakiekie-Ta­maki Lo­cal Board, ends on Septem­ber 7.

Un­der the terms of the agree­ment, Rixen is re­quired to re­move all of the cable park’s in­fra­struc­ture on this date.

Rixen co owner Kerry Martin says the com­pany has ap­plied for a pub­lic in­quiry as they want to stay long-term at the la­goon un­der a five-year, non-exclusive wa­ter use lease.

Martin says the cost of re­mov­ing the cable park would end the com­pany and it would like to keep the in­fra­struc­ture in place while the pub­lic in­quiry is car­ried out.

He says they put for­ward their ap­pli­ca­tion five weeks ago and it is now await­ing ap­proval from the Maun­gakiekie-Ta­maki Lo­cal Board.

‘‘We have got sup­port from all rel­e­vant wa­ter user groups for the in­quiry now ex­cept from the lo­cal board.’’

Lo­cal board chair­man Si­mon Ran­dall says the ap­pli­ca­tion is cur­rently be­ing pro­cessed by an Auck­land Coun­cil in­quiry team.

‘‘It might get to us for our Septem­ber lo­cal board meet­ing, if not it will be on the agenda for late Novem­ber,’’ he says.

Martin says if the ap­pli­ca­tion is not con­sid­ered in the Septem­ber meet­ing it will be ‘‘im­pos­si­ble for the cable to stay’’.

‘‘The con­sul­ta­tion pe­riod would last about two months, the coun­cil do not carry out in­quiries for a pe­riod of De­cem­ber as well, this would mean we would miss op­er­at­ing in the cru­cial sum­mer pe­riod.’’

Martin says they have al­ready re­ceived let­ters of sup­port from com­mu­nity mem­bers and groups.

‘‘The Ma­rine Ed­u­ca­tion and Recre­ation Cen­tre and Hal­berg Dis­abil­ity Sports Foun­da­tion have writ­ten let­ters of sup­port as we can help cater their great pro­grammes. It is our view that it would be an in­jus­tice to not al­low the pub­lic the op­por­tu­nity for a pub­lic in­quiry.’’

Ran­dall says the board has done all it can to ac­com­mo­date the cable park and the pro­cess­ing of the ap­pli­ca­tion is out of the board’s hands. ‘‘When we first gave tem­po­rary ap­proval we said now is the time to ap­ply to stay long term and they didn’t. They have now done that and it is be­ing pro­cessed.’’

TOM CARNEGIE / FAIR­FAX NZ

Rid­ers wait their turn to ride the cable sys­tem at One­hunga la­goon.

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