Category Archives: Uncategorized

Proposed Motel threat to Yates Park

A 15 unit motel plus manager’s residence is proposed at 1/75 and 77 Yates Road, Mangere East. The Mangere-Otahuhu Local Board have expressed concerns around the potential for future change of use of the development, especially to construct a stormwater pipe through Yates Park. The motel applicant also requires Council approval to conduct works within the dripline of one protected tree, a Silver Birch that stands within the park along the boundary of 77 Yates Road as part of the carpark construction works inside 77 Yates Road. The tree might be negatively affected by the works.

Do you use this park? Do you live down Yates Road? How will this effect you? Let ROCC know on the facebook page https://www.facebook.com/roccmangere/

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Redevelopment of the Mangere East Town Centre

The redevelopment of the Mangere East Town Centre is the Mangere-Otahuhu Local Board’s main priority for the forthcoming Long Term Plan 2018/28. The Council has completed an initial rough order of costs to spend about $700,000 – 1,000,000. But there are still some factors that need to be considered. The Local Board is looking to share the predicted costs with Auckland Council will help develop a business case for the redevelopment. We will be asking  the Local Board for ROCC to be involved as the ideas progress.

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GUEST BLOG: Mike Lee – Auckland Transport’s March of Folly « The Daily Blog

Source: GUEST BLOG: Mike Lee – Auckland Transport’s March of Folly « The Daily Blog

 

Historian Barbara Tuchman’s acclaimed ‘March of Folly – from Troy to Vietnam’ published in 1985 was about ‘the pervasive presence, through the ages, of failure, mismanagement, and delusion in government – contrary to its own self interest.’

I think about Barbara Tuchman’s book whenever the question of rail to Auckland airport comes up.  There could no clearer example of Tuchman’s thesis than the boards of Auckland Transport (AT) and NZTA marching in lockstep to rule out even the possibility of future trains to Auckland Airport. And, it’s not just words, over the Christmas holidays AT demolished Onehunga’s Nielson Street overbridge rebuilding the road at grade, thereby physically blocking the rail corridor to the airport.

Deliberately sabotaging the rail corridor to Auckland International Airport is one of the most irresponsible acts I have witnessed during my time in local government.

Auckland International Airport is of critical economic importance to Auckland and to New Zealand – it is the gateway to the country. Despite hundreds of millions spent in road construction, congestion on the route to the city is already near where it was 10 years ago, chronic at peak times, periodically at grid-lock.  With airport passenger movements currently 17 million per year, and predicted to increase to 20 million by 2020 and 40 million in 2044, this congestion can only become more dire.

Following on from work initiated by the former Auckland Regional Council, in September 2011, a multi-agency study involving Auckland Council, Auckland Transport, NZTA, KiwiRail and Auckland International Airport Ltd, with consultants GHD, after examining light rail (trams), busway and heavy rail (electric train) options, concluded that heavy rail from Onehunga 10km to the airport and 6.8km from Puhinui on the main trunk line would be the ‘most economically efficient’ solution – providing a fast, single-seat journey from airport to downtown Auckland (including the CRL stations), and all points on the rail network including Newmarket, Henderson, Glen Innes, Pukekohe, and ultimately Hamilton.

In 2012, this recommendation, after public consultation became a commitment in the Auckland Plan: ‘route protect a dedicated rail connection in the first decade (2011-2020); construct in the second decade (2021-2030).’

However in November 2014, Auckland Transport ‘planners’ (un-named) announced to the NZ Herald their preference for light rail.  A year or so after AT came up with a business case ‘proving’ extending (non-existing) light rail from Dominion Road to the airport would be more economic than extending (existing) heavy rail from Onehunga. As an example of the credibility of this business case, it claimed a second track for the 3.5 km Onehunga Branch Line would cost $578m, (notwithstanding it cost KiwiRail $9m to build the first track in 2010). It also claimed a tram coming from the airport via Dominion Road, despite stopping at 20 tram stops and numerous intersections while keeping to a 50kph speed limit, would get to the CBD within one minute of an electric train travelling at 110kph!  There are other claims which stretch credibility but let’s leave that to one side.

Melbourne is one major Australian city that does not yet have airport rail but it does have the most extensive light rail system in the world.  Unlike Auckland however, the Victorian government is not planning on light rail for Melbourne Airport but heavy rail. This on the grounds that trains as international best practice demonstrates, provide a faster, more predictable journey-time and carry a lot more people and luggage than street-running trams.

However I should point out that the argument in Auckland between light rail and heavy rail is something of a sham; (one of the few people still taking it seriously is Mayor Phil Goff), given the government’s recently announced answer for Auckland Airport’s transport problems: light rail in 2047, good old buses in the meantime.   I should add the only other supporters for trams to the airport are the bloggers at Transport Blog – self-styled experts who obligingly changed their Congestion Free Network ‘vision’ from trains to trams in line with the corporate position of Auckland Transport and NZTA [funny that isn’t it].  Vision on demand?

Rather than facing up to the growing transport crisis at Auckland Airport, the government is pushing the bizarre ‘East-West Link’ along the Onehunga foreshore, at $1.8b the most expensive road in New Zealand history with no cost benefit analysis (and the reason why the rail corridor from Onehunga was blocked). The only demonstrated benefit of the East-West Link would seem to be better truck access to the Penrose ‘inland port’ owned by the Port of Tauranga. Given Auckland’s long list of infrastructure priorities that would seem a rather expensive gift to the shareholders of the Port of Tauranga. (What electorate does the Minister of Transport Simon Bridges represent again?)

Last month AT’s ‘Project Director Key Strategic Initiatives’ Theunis Van Schalkwyk, whose responsibilities also happen to include the East-West Link, and who commissioned the business case that ‘proved’ trams superior to trains, and who along with his boss David Warburton persuaded the boards of NZTA and AT to exclude heavy rail from any consideration for Auckland Airport, announced to bemused Auckland councillors that ‘mass transit’ services will begin at Auckland Airport in 2024. When questioned on what he meant by ‘mass transit, he answered ‘advanced buses.’

However in arguing Auckland Airport’s transport problems can solved with more buses (‘advanced’ or otherwise), the government and AT’s bureaucrats have apparently forgotten their own Centre City Future Access Study of 2012, the modelling in which revealed that inner Auckland streets will be so congested with buses by 2021 that average road speeds will be down to 7kph.  Now they are proposing to add ‘platoons’ of airport buses to the city in 2024!  What confidence can Aucklanders have in these people’s advice?

Barbara Tuchman made up some rules on how policy decisions get to qualify as a ‘March of Folly’.  First the policy must be contrary to self-interest, [check]; secondly a feasible alternative policy must be available [check]; and finally the policy must be that of a group (not an individual (mad) ruler) [check].

The feasible alternative option of connecting Auckland International Airport by rail to the electrified main trunk line at Puhinui 6.8 km away must be carried out urgently before that option too is sabotaged.

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Press Release: Election campaign to be launched via public transport

For immediate release:

Election campaign to be launched via public transport

Once upon a time Auckland Transport proposed putting a motorway through the heart of Mangere and Otahuhu.  A group was formed to oppose this and after these plans were shelved, the group, known as Respect Our Community Campaign (ROCC) decided to keep the campaign going, and to keep working as advocates for their communities.

Now ROCC is standing a candidate in the Auckland local body elections.  Brendan Corbett is a Mangere resident and has lived in the area for 38 years.  He is a qualified builder and a technology teacher at Sir Edmund Hillary Collegiate. He also volunteers his time at Mangere Mountain Education Centre.    A kidney transplant recipient, he helped to start the Transplant Games and has represented New Zealand four times at these.  Brendan is a true community person and is a founding member of Save Our Unique Landscape (SOUL) which is currently working to protect Ihumatao for future generations.

The ROCC election campaign to vote Corbett for council will launch this Friday, the 2nd of September, at 7.30am at Manukau Train Station.  Brendan and his fellow ROCC members will ride the train to Westfield listening to commuters in the Manukau Ward and talking about issues that are important to them.

Brendan Corbett will be a strong community voice on Auckland Council and is campaigning on the following issues:

  • Protect Ihumatao: honouring Auckland’s heritage and parks
  • Housing: available and affordable
  • Public transport: free and frequent
  • Rail to the airport: now
  • Democracy: making it work
  • Liquor and gaming: reduce and control
  • Community facilities: build and improve

Media enquiries:

respectourcommunitycampaign@nullgmail.com

Facebook Event: https://www.facebook.com/events/878889955575962/

Ends

launch

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Stop big housing development plans for Ihumatao

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Mangere is under attack ……yet again

2015 Foreign owned housing company is seeking approval to build a huge 500 house development on the last remnant of rural land in Mangere in the Ihumatao area …the site of an ancient Pa on the slopes of two volcanos , Otuataua and Puketapapa. This land was previously zoned Public Open Space.
2014 Auckland Council plan to build an East West arterial road through Mangere , removing hundreds of houses, is defeated by a massive community fight back
2013 Special Housing Area designation for 32 hectare block of land on the slopes of Otuataua and Puke Tapapa volcanic cones
2012 The environment Court orders Auckland Council to re zone all rural land west of the Airport to “Future Urban”. This effectively destroys the unique heritage value of this area and permanently ends community plans for the Mangere Gateway Heritage Project
2012 Watercare announces plans to divert huge volumes of sewage and stormwater from central Auckland to the Mangere Treatment Plant. There is ongoing community opposition to this plan on environmental grounds
2009 Auckland Airport Second runway construction bulldozes through a 600 year old Maori cemetery on the Manukau Harbour foreshore unearthing 89 graves.
1960 -2000 Mangere Sewage Treatment plant makes large area of the Mangere foreshore off limits to the public and seriously pollutes the air, water and sea bed.
Historic volcanoes quarried for airport construction and Auckland’s roading network
1863 Foreign owned Land Developers use legal loophole to confiscate all Maori owned land in Mangere and on sell to British settlers.
1840 – 1850 Ongoing dispute over the Fairburn Purchase
1836 The Reverend William Fairburn claims to have purchased from Maori, all the land from Otahuhu to Papakura (83,000 acres)…the entire area of South and East Auckland.
1820 Inter tribal wars with Ngapuhi

Enough Is Enough

Protect what little is left of Mangere Heritage

Stop Housing on Public Open Space

Keep Mangere Liveable for everyone

Action required urgently

Email your views to:
specialhousingarea@nullaucklandcouncil.govt.nz
And cc Lydia Sosene, Chair, Mangere-Otahuhu Local Board:
lydia.sosene@nullaucklandcouncil.govt.nz
Subject: No Housing on Ihumatao

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People’s power prevails

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‘MOTORWAY VICTORY’- A WIN FOR DEMOCRACY AND COMMON SENSE

ROCC’s letter to the editor of the Manukau Courier. Published 23 January 2014

Last week’s announcement that government planners have dropped their proposal to carve an East-West motorway through Mangere, Otahuhu and Wymondley, will be welcomed by all residents.

The ‘Respect Our Community Campaign’ (ROCC) grew from a series of huge public meetings after the motorway options were first revealed in the Manukau Courier last September.

This campaign gave a strong, united voice to the widespread community outrage against these destructive proposals that threatened hundreds of homes plus many schools, pre-schools, churches and medical centres.

ROCC published two campaign newspapers that were letterboxed throughout the area by a vast army of volunteers. Our 4240-signature petition was tabled in parliament by Mangere MP Su’a William Sio in November. Follow-up petitions have since gathered nearly 2000 more names.

Over 320 prominent community leaders also stepped forward to publicly oppose the motorway plans. (View our website for the full list: www.rocc.org.nz)

Faced with this massive, unprecedented community backlash, the planners have finally backed-down, and now say they will instead try to engage with the community to seek agreeable traffic solutions in the industrial belt north of Manukau harbour.

‘People’s power’ has forced this dramatic U-turn. The previous $2billion motorway options for south Auckland (that transport minister Gerry Brownlee and John Key had demanded be ‘fast-tracked’), has fallen from being a major ‘priority project’, to zero. Democracy and common sense have prevailed over ‘motorway madness.’

ROCC thanks all those who came together to defend our community, especially our MPs, Local Boards, MANA Movement and Green Party members, schools and residents. ROCC will continue to promote sensible mobility solutions that enhance, and not destroy, our community.

Roger Fowler,
Spokesperson,
Respect Our Community Campaign (ROCC)

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ROCC Supporters

We would like to thank over 300 prominent community leaders of Mangere, Otahuhu & Wymondley who have come forward to voice their opposition to an East-West motorway:

  • Rennie Siakimotu, assistant Principal, Kingsford Primary, Mangere East.
  • Sir Peter Leitch, ‘Mad Butcher’ Mangere East.
  • Ciska Buitendijk, Literacy & numeracy tutor, Mangere East
  • Sarah-Marie Tupuaga, teacher, Mangere.
  • Meli Molesi, nurse, Middlemore Hospital.
  • Sioe Patumaka, customer service, Mangere.
  • Tuaine Nerio, coordinator, Wymondley Rd Early Childhood Learning Centre.
  • Sally Ikinofo, CEO Niuean Sports Federation, Mangere.
  • Ekepati Va, Administrator, Taeaofou Preschool, Mangere.
  • Tyrone Laurenson, English language tutor in Mangere.
  • Edwina Crese, preacher, Pacific Island Presbyterian Church.
  • Mereana Peka, manager Nga Whare Waatea Marae, Mangere
  • Fou Alene Tumataiki, manager, Niuean preschool, Mangere.
  • Koia Tenakore, President, Onehunga-Mangere United Softball Club
  • Kei Laupa, teacher, Mangere.
  • Faimai Tuimauga, Education consultant, Mangere East.
  • John Roache, president, Otahuhu Rugby Club & Auckland Samoan Rugby Club.
  • Pastor Lute Sefesi, Tongan Community Church, Mangere East
  • Hana AhoTaha QSM, Chair of Board, Niuean pre-school, Mangere.
  • Rosie Leota, secretary, Manukau City Assoc Football Club, Mangere.
  • Carol Poa, education support, Mangere.
  • Pastor Faupula Vaka, Tongan Community Church, Mangere East.
  • Fa’atamoe Salapo-Tuaimalo, Secretary Samoa Atia’e, Mangere.
  • Cathy Casey, Auckland City Councillor
  • Arvind Dharamsi, manager, Mangere East Post Office/Kiwibank
  • Ethni Snell, Literacy & Numeracy Tutor, Mangere.
  • Esteban Espinoza, Senior Social Worker, Mangere East.
  • Reverend Robati, minister, PIPC, Mangere.
  • Sergio Opazo, Coordinator, House of Friends, Mangere.
  • James Papalii, Mangere social worker, founder Waka Ama club, Mangere Bridge.
  • Ailafo Taliai, pastor, Kerisiano Fa’afouina Church, Mangere East.
  • Rev Peter Sykes, director, Mangere East Family Service Centre
  • Sione Kumitau, leader Pulefakamotu, Niue Okalana
  • Lekei Laupa, Preacher, Niuean Presbyterian Church, & Leader of Christian Women’s Fellowship, Mangere.
  • Rev Roy Christian, Mangere Presbyterian Church.
  • Jan Lambert, teaches English in Mangere, English Language Partners Auckland South.
  • Lynaire Doherty, Psychologist, Ohomairagi Trust, Mangere.
  • Fa’asaulala Leota, programme manager, AUT Manukau Campus.
  • Faimalo Timoteo, cultural coordinator, Samoa Atia’e, Mangere.
  • Saubree Edinberry, Chairman, Manukau City Assoc Football Club, Mangere East.
  • Roger Fowler QSM, manager Mangere East Community Learning Centre, Mana candidate for Manukau Councillor.
  • Piripi McLean, Social Worker, Mangere.
  • Glenis Allen, Positive Parenting facilitator in Mangere.
  • Naomi Lange, long time Mangere resident

Continue reading ROCC Supporters

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Presentation to Auckland Council Infrastructure Committee

These are the slides and the full text from the presentation Jasmine Kovach gave today to the Infrastructure Committee of Auckland Council.  You can download a pdf version here.

Slide1

Mr Chairperson, members of the committee, thank you for the opportunity to speak to you today regarding the East West Link.

My name is Jasmine Kovach and I am a proud resident of Otahuhu and a member of the Respect Our Community Campaign. My husband and I bought our first house in Otahuhu just over a year ago,intending it to be our family home where we could raise our two daughters. Having finally found an affordable house in a great neighbourhood in Auckland, we now learn that Auckland Transport plans to put a motorway through it.

The Respect Our Community Campaign has been set up by residents just like me, in response to the East West Link. We love our community and we want to see it thrive.We are all here for the long haul, not just property speculation. Our communities deserve more than a motorway through the middle of them.

We have been greatly assisted with this presentation by the Citizens Transport Coalition, and Donna Wynd has come to support us today.
It is clear that this proposal is expensive, destructive and cuts across other aims of the region’s transport policy. This presentation will focus on the destructive aspect of this project.

First, we would like to go on record as noting that Auckland Transport’s behaviour throughout this process has been disgraceful. Monday’s press release notwithstanding, no one from Auckland Transport has come to talk to anyone in the community about the East West Link apart from some presentations to the local board and some local businesses. The process so far has been akin to what one might expect to find in a third-world slum clearance, not a representative democracy.

Continue reading Presentation to Auckland Council Infrastructure Committee

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