Sad sight at Plim­mer­ton

Kapi-Mana News - - OPINION -

to pre­vent this nui­sance and dan­ger other than putting up sig­nage for­bid­ding the prac­tice?

The park is vested in the coun­cil and it has a re­spon­si­bil­ity for peo­ple to re­main safe when us­ing it.

My ex­pe­ri­ence of in­form­ing the coun­cil of trail­bike users was to be told to call the po­lice. How’s that for lack of in­ter­est? Is it for­get­ting whose park it is?

When will the coun­cil take some af­fir­ma­tive ac­tion in pre­vent­ing mo­tor­bikes from ac­tu­ally gain­ing ac­cess to the park trails?

Some strate­gi­cally placed zigzag metal bar­ri­ers at var­i­ous nar­row places that al­low push chairs un­der­neath and peo­ple to eas­ily ne­go­ti­ate would hope­fully per­suade th­ese thought­less trail­bike in­di­vid­u­als that they are un­wel­come.

The coun­cil says that the park ‘‘is a spe­cial place and we want to keep it that way’’. I say to the coun­cil: do some­thing pos­i­tive about it and stop pussy­foot­ing around the prob­lem.

Mar­ket has dis­played the fea­tures of a free mar­ket, with buy­ers and sell­ers meet­ing and trad­ing. Many pro­duce grow­ers from the Levin/ Otaki area have of­fered truck­loads of great-qual­ity fresh veg­eta­bles and fruit at very fair prices. Also fresh fish, baked goods, flow­ers, art and crafts, etc.

We have seen masses of ke­babs, frit­ters, wraps, and other foods cooked as we watch and we have en­joyed mu­sic from a va­ri­ety of mu­si­cians and from Pa­cific record­ings.

Some new stalls have suc­ceeded and oth­ers have failed. Some have come and gone, their mer­chan­dise sea­sonal or opportunistic.

Such is the way that mar­ket forces work.

Re­cently Porirua City Coun­cil has in­ter­vened.

Some coun­cil of­fi­cers have de­cided that the mar­ket lacks ‘‘vi­brancy and ex­cite­ment’’, and needs more rules: trace­abil­ity, or­ganic food, 50 per cent of stands with fresh veg­eta­bles, weekly re­ports to coun­cil by ev­ery Wed­nes­day on per­for­mance against key goals etc.

The coun­cil’s ne­go­ti­a­tions with the long-stand­ing and ex­pe­ri­enced Li­ons club op­er­a­tors went nowhere.

So now the Li­ons have re­lo­cated the mar­ket to Wai­tan­girua, where it has a lot of sup­port from buy­ers and sell­ers.

It is al­ready show­ing that it is a bit dif­fer­ent to the Cob­ham Court mar­ket.

There are new stalls that will suc­ceed and old ones that will not stay as their of­fer­ings do not suit the changed mar­ket­place.

Through the tran­si­tion it is still the Li­ons club, with hard-work­ing vol­un­teers col­lect­ing money that will be dis­trib­uted to char­i­ties through­out the area, as has been hap­pen­ing in Porirua for many years.

What next? There is a sin­gle ten­der for a new Cob­ham Court mar­ket on the coun­cil ta­ble.

My fear is that the coun­cil of­fi­cers who are at­tempt­ing to ma­nip­u­late our Satur­day Mar­ket will al­ter their draft terms to get a deal. Will the ratepay­ers take on some costs of op­er­a­tion, such as traf­fic man­age­ment?

In the event that the new op­er­a­tor fails to meet the strin­gent rules, what then? Will it be­come a 100 per cent coun­cil­funded and man­aged event? I sug­gest few ratepay­ers will will­ingly con­trib­ute to sup­port this coun­cil ‘‘vi­sion’’. Note that the re­view process has re­sulted in no Satur­day Mar­ket in Porirua City Cen­tre and will have al­ready con­sumed thou­sands of ratepay­ers’ dol­lars. I re­cently walked along the seafront prom­e­nade at Plim­mer­ton.

I was sad­dened by the de­crepit state of the seafront balustrade wall, with its bro­ken and crum­bling con­crete, ex­posed rust­ing re­in­forc­ing steel and gen­eral run­down air of ne­glect and de­cay.

This, in one of the coun­try’s high­est ratepay­ing com­mu­ni­ties. And then, the dog fae­ces – it seemed as if ev­ery 50 me­tres there were dog de­posits in var­i­ous stages of ‘‘ma­tu­rity’’ smeared on the foot­path from skate­boards, bikes, shoes etc. Truly dis­gust­ing.

Then I walked down Steyne Ave to the shops and there were at least four dog de­posits on the foot­path, one swarm­ing with flies. Un­be­liev­ably gross.

In re­cent trav­els in cen­tral Asia, Jor­dan, Nepal and Raro­tonga, I did not see such me­di­ae­val filth on public prom­e­nades. Why here?

C’mon, you dog own­ers, get your act to­gether. You’re cre­at­ing an un­pleas­ant Third World vibe on our foot­paths.

Keep your dogs at home and let them per­form their ablu­tions in your own yard or res­i­den­tial street, not on a com­mu­nity prom­e­nade and vil­lage cen­tre.

Clean­ing up af­ter the event with a dog poo bag must be some sort of a ur­ban myth, be­cause it’s ob­vi­ously not prac­tised by many.

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