Community News

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Click here to view an inspiring story of three cousies from up North who are making... Read more

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Here is an article in The New Zealand Herald dated 14 th November 2015 by Fran O Sullivan that puts forward the argument for Council selling non-core assets. "Auckland Council's top executives have shown realism by commissioning two leading consultants to come... Read more

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Auckland Council is also actively implementing many initiatives to grow the supply of social housing that is affordable by working with the full spectrum of the community housing and commercial sectors.   “We are operating in a new way so... Read more

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The top 10 most scenic Auckland Cycleways in the Auckland region have been just been revealed in Auckland Transport’s Great Ride Passports.    Each passport... Read more

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Auckland summers are a great time for a splashing in the pool, but owning a pool also comes with responsibility for pool owners to keep your swimming pool safe.   Unsupervised access via faulty gates and fences is a leading cause of children drowning... Read more

free-bike-training-courses

Auckland Transport’s free cycling courses are now available to everyone in Auckland. The courses cater for various confidence levels including those who have never been on a bike. They will be held throughout Auckland and will run until... Read more

Auckland Council is committed to freeing up more land for housing – enough for around 12,000 new homes.   Freeing up more than 1,000ha of land is one of the steps Auckland Council is taking to tackle the city’s... Read more

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The Howick Local Board  has now formally endorsed the  Read more

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Auckland Council's Adopt a Park programme is a wonderful opportunity for school students to learn about their local park and its habitats, to get out of the classroom and do something good for the community and environment.   We can tailor the... Read more

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Community shellfish monitoring is administered by Auckland Council, Waikato Regional Council, and the Department of Conservation (DoC) support community groups, schools and iwi to carry out annual shellfish monitoring. Groups perform... Read more

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Information about upcoming opportunities to work with Auckland Council will be published on the Auckland Council website when available. However, governance, planning and budgetary considerations mean it is not always possible to give advance notice of... Read more

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Auckland Council added 178ha to our regional parks network and linked 100km of walkways on Waiheke Island. "As our city grows, we need to ensure we protect our green spaces so future generations can enjoy Auckland’s spectacular natural... Read more

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Your new inorganic collection service The new service is: annual booked by the resident funded by rates, meaning there is no additional charge to... Read more

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Family First NZ has successfully applied for an Interim Restriction Order on the book Into The River by Ted Dawe - a book laced with detailed descriptions of sex acts, coarse language and scenes of drug-taking.   The book came to public... Read more

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Spring is in the air at last, and what better place to celebrate its welcome return than a visit to Cornwall Park.   Cornwall Park is centred on the... Read more

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Auckland Conversations brings international and national leaders in design, planning, heritage, environment and socio-economics to... Read more

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Spring is the perfect time to set up a compost system and start recycling your food and garden waste.... Read more

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Auckland Council have various community grants available that recognises the vital role community groups and organisations play in helping Auckland become the world’s most liveable city.   Grants are one way that the council contributes to a... Read more

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Auckland Council carry out regular monitoring of the Hauraki Gulf (including Tamaki Estuary)  water quality. They report that overall, the water quality in our bathing beaches and lakes is very good and meets New Zealand health guidelines. However, from... Read more

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A key result from Ernst & Young's recent global job creation survey indicates that young people plan to own a business, according to a recent New Zealand Herald... Read more

The Argument for Council Selling Non-Core Assets

Here is an article in The New Zealand Herald dated 14 th November 2015 by Fran O Sullivan that puts forward the argument for Council selling non-core assets.

“Auckland Council’s top executives have shown realism by commissioning two leading consultants to come up up with recommendations to sell assets, in order to raise funds to underwrite the city’s growth.”

“With Auckland facing significant growth pressure from immigration, and ratepayers increasingly opposed to rate hikes, the option to monetise the council’s balance sheet rather than resorting to more debt funding ought to be attractive.

READ MORE:
• Auckland for sale, but rates won’t drop
• Project Auckland: Five big years

Behind the scenes, the Government has made it clear that an asset-rich Auckland can’t expect the taxpayer to fund a disproportionate amount of the city’s infrastructure spending.

But it will take political will from Auckland City’s councillors to get the proposals over the line.

The reports out yesterday from investment bankers Cameron Partners and advisory firm EY have recommended either the full or partial sale of a swag of council-owned assets. These include Ports of Auckland, Auckland International Airport and Watercare — as well as a swathe of other assets ranging from golf courses to public reserves.

The recommendations were hardly surprising, given their authorship.

Rob Cameron is known somewhat facetiously as “Mr Mom” by elements of the investment banking community.

Cameron was the Government’s “go-to guy” in his role as chairman of the Capital Markets Taskforce.

The “mixed ownership model”, known colloquially as “Mom”, which the taskforce recommended involved the Crown selling down its shareholding in prime state-owned enterprises to 51 per cent.”

Go here to read the whole article 

 

More Social Housing Needed in Auckland

Auckland Council is also actively implementing many initiatives to grow the supply of social housing that is affordable by working with the full spectrum of the community housing and commercial sectors.  

“We are operating in a new way so Aucklanders can have a range of social housing options, from emergency shelters and transitional housing to supportive housing for vulnerable populations, including seniors and people with mental illness, to public and non-profit affordable rental housing, market rental and home ownership,” says Penny Hulse. 

“The SHA requirement is that developments provide either a minimum of 10 per cent affordable social housing homes for sale or five per cent be retained over time as community housing.  

“We have one SHA where the affordable housing percentage is 15 per cent. We are also very focused on working in partnership to develop affordable housing on council land that is no longer required. We have a number of developments underway with ‘shared equity’ housing being developed through a community housing provider. A suite of tools is required to address the affordability gap.” 

Auckland Council has a strong commitment to emergency housing and that will continue as will its work on moving the emergency housing sector towards a more sustainable funding model. 

 

You can read the full report here 

Top 10 Most Scenic Auckland Cycleways

The top 10 most scenic Auckland Cycleways in the Auckland region have been just been revealed in Auckland Transport’s Great Ride Passports

 

Each passport contains a map of a ride with a description of the terrain, length, amenities and points of interest along the way. The 10 passports are available at local libraries or from Auckland Transport

 

The number of Great Rides has increased to 10 from six last year and Kathryn King, Auckland Transport’s Walking and Cycling manager says they have proved very popular. 

 

“We are often asked by people who are new to cycling where they can find safe, scenic, fun places to ride. In fact, our cycling maps are among the most searched for items on the Auckland Transport website,” she says. 

 

“These great rides offer a way to get out with family or friends and discover a new part of Auckland by bike. The Auckland region has some stunning natural beauty and what better way to enjoy it than on a bike.” 

 

One of 10 bike rides featured the passports is the Twin Streams bike ride in suburban Henderson, it runs alongside a stream and is surrounded by native bush and birds. 

 

The rides are suitable for most ages and abilities and take in a variety of environments, scenic vistas and points of historical and cultural interest.  

The webpage has maps and a short promotional video which provides a glimpse of some hidden gems, accessible only by bike or on foot. 

The Great Rides are:

  • Matakana Trails
  • Te Ara Tahuna Pathway:  Orewa Estuary
  • Green Route: Devonport to Takapuna
  • Hobsonville Point
  • Twin Streams: Henderson Creek and Opanuku Stream
  • Auckland Waterfront:  Britomart to Mission Bay
  • Pakuranga Rotary Pathway
  • The Cascades Paths:  Pakuranga, Botany and Meadowlands
  • Waikaraka Cycleway:  Onehunga to Mangere Bridge
  • Wattle Downs

Keeping Your Swimming Pool Safe

Auckland summers are a great time for a splashing in the pool, but owning a pool also comes with responsibility for pool owners to keep your swimming pool safe.

 

Unsupervised access via faulty gates and fences is a leading cause of children drowning and accidents in domestic pools.

 

To keeping your swimming pool safe:

  • maintain your pool fence
  • ensure your gate self-closes and latches shut behind you
  • register your pool with the council.

Inspections are carried out every three years and the first inspection is free. Auckland Council officers also provide free safety advice to pool owners.

 

Portable pools are also becoming increasingly popular with young families but children must be supervised at all times by a responsible adult to keep them safe.

 

To check if your pool is registered, call Auckland Council on 09 301 0101, or visit Auckland Council’s Pools and spas page for more information about pool fencing and portable pool requirements.

Auckland Transport’s Free Cycling Courses

Auckland Transport’s free cycling courses are now available to everyone in Auckland. The courses cater for various confidence levels including those who have never been on a bike. They will be held throughout Auckland and will run until December.

 

The timing was perfect for Trixina Smith: “I’m getting ready to buy a bike so this course has come along at just the right time.”

 

Trixina was nervous when she started her first Auckland Transport beginner cycling course. But by the end, she had the confidence to think she could be a ‘bike person’.

 

“It was great. When I first started I was really nervous. I thought: ‘Flip, I’m not going to be any good’. I had a bit of a tumble but I’m still okay, so that’s good,” she says.

 

“My whole family bike, including the little girls, so we now can go out together. I want to do it for my health, fitness and the practicality of getting around the North Shore. I used to run for fitness but I thought biking might work better,” she says.

Zane Bray who organises the training for Auckland Transport on the North Shore says:

 

“It’s great to see the progression. It’s just the smiles you get out of people. Everyone who comes along seems to learn something from each course.”

Trixina has already signed up for two more beginner courses: “It’s amazing that AT put these on for someone like me who never had a bike as a child. Coming to this has given me confidence.”

Once people have been on the beginner course they can move to the ‘Cycling on the Road’ course.

 

Other courses include a ‘Road Cycling Workshop’ tailored for people who might be training for a cycle event and would like to join a training group on road, the ‘Basics of Bike Maintenance’ course and the ‘City Riding’ courses, aimed at the slightly more confident person on a bike wanting to try cycling in the centre of Auckland. 

For more details of dates and locations visit the Auckland Transport website or call 09 355 3553.

Council Freeing Up More Land for Housing

Auckland Council is committed to freeing up more land for housing – enough for around 12,000 new homes.

 

Freeing up more than 1,000ha of land is one of the steps Auckland Council is taking to tackle the city’s housing shortage.

 

Applications have recently been accepted to rezone land for residential development in several special housing areas (SHAs), including Flat Bush and Hingaia, and hearings are scheduled for Scott Point and Huapai.

 

Franklin precinct has been approved, providing for up to 5,500 homes. In total, these areas allow for a potential 12,300 new dwellings, reducing Auckland’s housing shortage.

 

Boosting the supply of new homes and sections through these SHAs is one of the ways the council is working to improve Auckland’s housing issues.

 

Auckland Council Chief Economist Chris Parker wrote an article in the New Zealand Herald recently about other ways the council is working to increase housing supply. These include:

  • ensuring at least seven years’ worth of land is available for new housing at all times
  • encouraging intensification in areas with good transport connectivity
  • plans to provide a housing bond guarantee so community housing providers can build more affordable homes. 

Other factors contributing to Auckland’s housing issues are beyond the council’s control, says Chris Parker.

 

These factors are mostly on the demand side, and include the high rate of immigration, ready access to cheap money and subdued growth in the residential construction industry.

 

Solutions to these challenges will require action from the central government as well as the council, the development sector and the community.

 

Residential development to boost housing supply

Applications include:

Location

Size

Potential yield

Flat Bush Sub Precinct C 250ha 1700 dwellings
Hingaia Precinct 1 (Reynolds) 15ha 400 dwellings
Hingaia Precinct 2 (Hayfield Way)  65ha 650 dwellings
Hingaia Precinct 3 (KARLA)  156ha 900 dwellings
Scheduled hearings    
Franklin 2 Precinct (Wesley)   302ha 4500 dwellings
Scott Point 156ha 3000 dwellings
Huapai Triangle  65ha 1150 dwellings

 


Pakuranga Town Centre Masterplan Appoved

The Howick Local Board  has now formally endorsed the Pakuranga Town Centre Masterplan, which presents the board’s aspirations for Pakuranga town centre and provides a 30-year vision for the future of Pakuranga.

 

The masterplan outlines expectations for high-quality civic spaces, modern and efficient public transport facilities, green connections through and around the town centre, and a thriving, exciting retail area.

 

“Our masterplan will put Pakuranga on the map as a well-connected, vibrant town centre,” says Howick Local Board Chair David Collings. “It will also provide the community with work opportunities, while ensuring it works alongside the fast-developing transport infrastructure.”

 

The plan will be used by the local board, Auckland Transport, the community, private developers and council teams to influence and inform the area’s growth and development.

 

Click here to read about the Pakuranga Town Centre Masterplan 

Adopt a Park Programme

Auckland Council’s Adopt a Park programme is a wonderful opportunity for school students to learn about their local park and its habitats, to get out of the classroom and do something good for the community and environment.

 

We can tailor the programme to suit your school’s needs. One class can complete an activity each term or the whole school can be involved, if feasible. 

Adopt a Park activities include:

  • picking up rubbish
  • monitoring wildlife or pests
  • reporting damage to parks furniture
  • planting trees.

Parks staff will provide resources for all activities.

 

In addition to the park activities, rangers can also run educational sessions on park-related topics.

 

To find out more click here to contact Auckland Council

Community Shellfish Monitoring

Community shellfish monitoring is administered by Auckland Council, Waikato Regional Council, and the Department of Conservation (DoC) support community groups, schools and iwi to carry out annual shellfish monitoring.

Groups perform annual surveys to count and measure the dominant kinds of shellfish, such as cockles and pipis, living in sheltered beaches, harbours and estuaries.

Shellfish monitoring provides an ecological health indicator for the beaches of the Hauraki Gulf. It also aims to increase environmental awareness and help the Ministry of Primary Industries (MPI) assess the effectiveness of its shellfish harvesting limits.

How can schools get involved?

Auckland Council provides groups with practical assistance and equipment to undertake annual shellfish surveys.

The survey programme is linked with the learning outcomes and unit standards of the NZ curriculum. Teacher resource kits have been developed for two levels – upper primary/intermediate (Levels 3-4), and Year 12 Biology (Level 7).

Upper primary teacher resource kit (PDF 3.6MB) 
Junior learning journal (PDF 663KB) 
Secondary teacher resource kit (PDF 4MB) 
Biology student workbook (PDF 1.6MB)

Findings are reported to the community, sent to MPI and the Hauraki Gulf Forum, and included in the State of the Environment Report.

 

To express interest in co-ordinating a community shellfish survey, contact the Environmental Programmes Team at Auckland Council