Archive | Isthmus west

Roskill business precinct report for May

Published: 10 April 2005

Auckland City Council’s economic & sustainable business committee has called for a report on the Roma & Stoddard Rds business precinct plan at its May meeting.


In the map, Stoddard Rd dissects the map and Roma Rd, off May Rd, is on the other side of the State Highway 20 corridor, which is marked in grey.


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Specific Herne Bay request included in residential 1 review

Published: 3 April 2005

Auckland City Council planning staff are continuing a review of the city’s residential 1 & 2 special character zones.

Progress on the review has been reported confidentially to the council’s environment, heritage & urban form committee, but one specific request was discussed in open meeting in March, when Andrew Seerden, of Albany Rd, Herne Bay, asked during the public forum for properties on the eastern side of Kelmarna Ave zoned 6A to be rezoned residential 1.

The committee agreed this particular request should be considered as part of the zone review.

Mr Seerden said residents’ concern was prompted by the pending demolition of a house on Kelmarna Ave for site redevelopment.

He said the majority of Kelmarna Ave properties were zoned residential 1, but 7 were zoned the less restrictive residential 6A. “This is a heritage area with bungalows everywhere, but high-density buildings are a possibility. The buyer of 2 of the 7 residential 6A properties, an architect, has indicated he will build high density.”

Mr Seerden said the streetscape & urban design tied the area of Trinity St, Kelmarna Ave & Albany Rd together and the core aspects of character & architectural style should be maintained.

He said high-density buildings would dramatically increase traffic, which had already increased dramatically over the past 2 years and would increase again on completion of a development at the corner of Kelmarna Ave & Hukanui Crescent. The area had limited parking options.

Mr Seerden said the council had set a precedent for such a zone change, doing this for some Herne Bay properties when the proposed district plan was released in 1993.

Deput mayor Bruce Hucker said the residential 1 sites had proved popular “because it has been a down-zoning of development potential. He said the key provision was reduction of the section size from 1:400m², making redevelopment harder.

“Values have gone up considerably, which has been a very good story for conservation,” Cllr Hucker said.

Related stories on the Urban vision website:

Urban design panel is a growth industry

Wide scope for new Hauraki Gulf design panel

7 urban form reports under way

Specific Herne Bay request included in residential 1 review

In Forward thinking: Comment: Agendas fill with confidential items

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Council takes step on Dominion Rd corridor project

Published: 13 March 2005

Auckland City Council’s transport & urban linkages committee has decided to seek funding to buy land to widen Dominion Rd (the line cutting down the middle of the map at right), build new bus stations and make bus route changes.

Total project cost has been put at $53.5 million. Committee chairman Richard Simpson said the council would continue to lobby for central & regional government subsidies for it.

Cllr Simpson said after the committee met on Monday 7 March the project was crucial to developing & strengthening the city’s passenger transport network.

“Dominion Road links the cbd, western rail line & Transit NZ’s future extensions to State Highway 20 (the western ring route), and will play a vital role in getting more people using passenger transport across the region.

“More & more people will live along, near or connected to Dominion Rd and, while existing passenger transport measures have been very successful in increasing the number of people busing & cycling along Dominion Rd, we need to continue improving the bus system to ensure it remains efficient & effective in the future,” he said.

Designations for widening the road have been in place since the 1960s and the passenger transport designation along Dominion Rd was confirmed last year.

The council budget for the year to June 2006 includes $680,000 for the corridor’s design and $4.1 million for land acquisition along Dominion Rd and in 4 other areas.

Cllr Simpson said the designation meant 1-2m would be taken from many frontages, but buildings fronting on to Dominion Rd within the Valley Rd, Balmoral & Mt Roskill shopping areas wouldn’t be affected.

The bus route changes in the package will be around the Valley Rd & Balmoral Rd shopping strips.   

290 properties along the 6km corridor will be affected in some way over the next 12 years. Cllr Simpson said land would be bought and work completed in stages to reduce disruption.

“There’s no denying the scale of this project is huge, but the benefits to passenger transport outweigh the complexities. Dominion Rd is already a passenger transport success story, with buses now accounting for almost half of the people travelling along the road towards the city every morning peak. The project aims to build on this success by continuing the council’s investment in the route as growing passenger demands dictate,” Cllr Simpson said.

New bus bays, upgraded bus stops & related streetscape improvements are to be done within 2-5 years, footpath & road widening within 5-8 years, route deviations around Valley Rd in 6-8 years, and around the Balmoral Rd shops in 10-12 years.

Cllr Simpson said the corridor’s development would also future-proof Dominion Rd for new technologies, including light rail.

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Councillors find live bands & 3am closing “more than minor effect”

Published: 8 March 2005

Jurisdiction: Auckland City

Neighbourhood: Mt Eden

Applicant: Richard Brookes & Liana Ross (trading as Iberia Russian/Georgian Restaurant)

Application: 250-256 Dominion Rd, to extend trading hours from midnight to 3am and introduce live bands.

Decision: The committee voted to notify the application.

Application detail: The officer recommendation was to grant consent, on the basis that these changes wouldn’t have adverse effects because the bands would operate within the noise standards of the district plan, while the movement of people & traffic wouldn’t be a nuisance because the premises & parking (accessed from Valley Rd) were separated from residential properties.

However, committee chairman Faye Storer said there were numerous changes which, combined, made the premises quite different from the original restaurant. At an earlier stage it got a tavern licence so it could install 18 poker machines.

The applicants agreed to shut the band down at 2.30am and also agreed to limit numbers on the premises to 60. But they had earlier told the committee up to 120 people had been on the premises at a time.

The committee agreed effects from being open after midnight would be more than minor, particularly noise. And chairman Faye Storer advised the applicants: “If you’re going to go out to notification it’s better to state the reality (120 patrons) rather than the unrealistic.”

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Council to look at buying Kelly St site

Published: 3 March 2005

The long-running saga of Kelly St in Mt Eden took another step yesterday with an Auckland City Council committee resolution to look at the implications, including costs, of buying a site for which a developer has consent to build an apartment block.

The Eden-Albert community board voted at its February meeting to pursue purchase of the 17 Kelly St site for a neighbourhood park. The arts, culture & recreation committee decided on Wednesday to get staff to report on the purchase proposition to the council’s combined committees.

On Tuesday, the council’s planning fixtures committee appointed independent commissioners to determine an application for a retrospective variation to a condition of consent for remediation of the contaminated site. Remediation has involved digging a very large hole on the site of the former Institute of Environmental Science & Research Ltd (ESR), whose sale of the property to Glenstone Ltd (Neil Wanden, ESR’s former chief financial officer) has brought with it numerous allegations of impropriety.

The Auditor-general’s office was called in in 2001and the Auditor-general, Kevin Brady, although expressing concern that ESR was dealing with a single party rather than seeking competitive offers, was satisfied that ESR & Mr Wanden had acted properly.

Local councillors Glenda Fryer & Neil Abel gave impassioned speeches to the committee in favour of buying the site for a park, pointing to an October 2004 report which showed the Eden-Albert ward had only 1.9ha/1000 people of useable open space, by far the lowest ratio in the city.

The average across the whole of Auckland City was 3.8ha, led by 6ha in the Eastern Bays ward, 4.1ha in Tamaki-Maungakiekie and Western Bays, 4ha in Avondale-Roskill, 3.5ha in Hobson.

Websites: Auckland City Council

Report to Auditor-general


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Submissions open on Avondale’s future document

Published: 3 March 2005

A draft framework document to guide Avondale’s growth will open for public submissions on Tuesday 15 March and close on Friday 6 May.

The framework document, Avondale’s future, was approved for further consultation at today’s meeting of Auckland City Council urban strategy & governance committee, which oversees growth planning.

The framework sets out strategies on how Avondale could be developed. Consultation on it has already seen improvements made to the busy town centre.

Deputy mayor Bruce Hucker, who chairs the committee, said the process started in 1999 but there had been improvements along the way, including a Mainstreet upgrade, $500,000 of cycle & walkway improvements, travel-to-school plans and design improvements for the community centre.

The emphasis now is on the town centre, railway station & community centre.

Strategies in the framework include proposed changes to the district plan as well as suggestions for capital works that would have to go through a council budgeting process.

Consultation will start with 3 open days. Council staff will be available to discuss the framework at Avondale Community Centre on:

Thursday 31 March, noon-8pm
Friday 1 April, 9am-noon, and
Saturday 2 April, 9am-1pm.

Website: Avondale’s future


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Momo Teahouse fined for hygiene breaches

Published: 27 February 2005

The owner of the Momo Teahouse café in Mt Albert has been fined $5510 on food hygiene charges in the Auckland District Court after a prosecution by Auckland City Council.

Hatsy Investments Ltd (Lai Hong) got consent in August 2002 to convert the teahouse into a tavern. The owner now, Green Land Ltd (Li Jingqing & Wang Kai Cheng), was convicted on 46 charges under the food hygiene regulations, relating to:

poor cleanliness & maintenance
failing to keep the premises pest-free – a cockroach infestation was discovered
no hand-washing facilities
delays in necessary repair work to the floor
smoking in the kitchen & food-preparation areas.

The company was also convicted on 2 charges under the Local Government Act of failing to comply with instructions from a council officer.

The café at 930 New North Rd, Mt Albert, featured recently on the television show, The Inspectors.

The council’s senior environmental health officer, David Vince, said environmental health officers closed the cafe for 4 days in March 2004 and, after further inspections, recommended a voluntary closure for 4 days in July to resolve critical food safety issues. Both times the café was allowed to reopen after rectifying matters, but the council still took Green Land to court because it continued to breach food hygiene standards.

The café has now moved up the council’s food safety assessment system from E to D grade, a level which indicates the premises aren’t achieving a satisfactory compliance level or have repeated faults from a previous inspection.

The company now has until Friday 11 March to tell the council why it should continue to hold a food health licence. The council’s planning fixtures committee is expected to make a decision by the end of March.

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11m² tavern extension allowed

Published: 8 February 2005

Jurisdiction: Auckland City

Neighbourhood: Grey Lynn

Applicant: Simbell Investments Ltd (Brett Simeti & Ian Campbell)

Application: 455 Richmond Rd, corner Wilton St, to expand tavern by 11.2m² within the existing building

Decision: The council’s planning fixtures committee approved the application on a non-notified basis.

Application detail: Simbell established the Gypsy Tearoom tavern in 2002, with consent for a 23m² public area allowing a maximum 26 patrons, in a gross ground-floor area of 63.5m².

The tavern office has been moved upstairs, allowing its 11.2m² to be converted to tavern & function room use for up to 11 people.

Councillors were happy with a planning report which said the noise associated with an extra 11 people would be insignificant, although a neighbour told one councillor during their site visit that patrons spilled out on to the footpath, drinking & smoking.

Applicant’s other interests: Mr Simeti & Mr Campbell are also directors of Simbell Ventures Ltd. Mr Simeti is a former director of DB South Island Brewery Ltd

Update: 11 February 2005

Oops, wrong end of the street

This item was originally (for 3 days) posted in the Ponsonby neighbourhood, because that’s where the council documentation had it and I hadn’t produced a map to point out the error to myself.

Although I don’t know the precise boundaries, I figure this tavern is really in Grey Lynn, maybe West Lynn.

Boundaries are one thing, feel is another, and probably more important, as this email informed me yesterday: “A small & insignificant cultural point: as a long-time Grey Lynner I was wondering why the Gypsy Tearooms are described as Ponsonby in your update. They are in West Lynn to be exact – quite a long haul from the heart of Ponsonby. We locals fear this exact point: Grey Lynn ‘becoming’ Ponsonby – please no! They are culturally quite different places. (However we do welcome the opening of eateries and drinkeries in GL…)

So today I’ve done a map and moved the item from one category to another. I suppose the next task will be to take a photo of numerous Grey Lynners & West Lynners enjoying themselves on Richmond St, their end.

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Consent decision on Dress Smart expansion deferred

Published: 26 January 2005

Jurisdiction: Auckland City

Neighbourhood: Onehunga

Applicant: Armstrong Jones Management Pty Ltd (for the Australian unlisted ING Retail Property Fund)

Application: 151 Arthur St, redevelopment of a large part of the Dress Smart factory outlet centre

Decision: The council planning fixtures committee agreed to handle the application on a non-notified basis, but deferred considering the application itself for lack of time.

Application detail: The proposal involves redevelopment of part of the land to the north of Paynes Lane currently occupied by Dress Smart & its ground-level parking area.

The proposed development is on land fronting Arthur & Waller Sts & Paynes Lane, plus a small addition to the existing complex facing Galway St. 1177m² of retail & related floorspace would be demolished and 166 parking spaces removed to make way for a 4-storey building, with parking on the 4th-floor roof.

The 5005m² gross floor area in the new development would have up to 30 shops in the basement & 7 at street level facing Arthur St, 9 basement parking spaces, 132 at street level, 123 & 169 on the top 2 levels (total 433; total in the whole centre on completion of this part, 758). There will be a link to the Onehunga Mall from the Waller St entrance.

The net floorspace increase would be 3828m², taking the whole of Dress Smart to about 12,400m², including parking.

Dress Smart began in 1995 with 20 shops in 2344m² which previously contained a supermarket & other shops. It’s since expanded in 5 stages, the first 3 north of Paynes Lane and the 4th & 5th south of the lane.

AMP Henderson Private Capital NZ Ltd originally partnered developer John Bougen in the venture, then bought the whole enterprise before selling it for $65 million to the Australian ING wholesale fund in 2003.

Website: Dress Smart

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Maungawhau Mt Eden management plan consultation opens

Published: 24 January 2005

Public consultation starts today on Auckland City Council’s review of the Maungawhau Mt Eden management plan. 

Consultation continues until Monday 7 March. The draft of the revised management plan will also be open to consultation when it’s released in July.

Cllr Penny Sefuiva, deputy chairman of the council’s environment, heritage & urban form committee, said the council was legally required to outline the city’s general intentions for use, development & maintenance of reserve land, which then provided a framework within which all future management would be carried out.

More than 1.2 million people & 270,000 vehicles/year visit Maungawhau Mt Eden, which is the highest of Auckland’s volcanoes at 196m. It’s protected by the Reserves & Historic Places Act and the Isthmus section of the council’s district plan.

Website: Council management plan page

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