Sale funds tagged to improve reserve

Publish Date : 04 Aug 2022
Children's Forest
The popular Children's Forest reserve area could be improved using funds from selling small unused land lots

Approval has been given to sell land in Settlement Road, Fulmen Place, Game Place and Redcrest Avenue.

Papakura Local Board has told Eke Panuku, Auckland Council’s urban regeneration agency, the proceeds should be used to fund work at the Children’s Forest (Game Place).

It says any remaining funds should be applied to Keri Downs Park, Opāheke Park, Smiths Reserve, Bruce Pulman Park and Margan Bush.

That would see track development at the Children’s Forest and Margan Bush, work on developing a destination playground at Bruce Pulman, developing an informal recreation area at Opāheke, and the implementation of a concept plan for Keri Downs, and the second stage of the plan for Smiths Reserve.

Board Chair Brent Catchpole says it’s a sensible approach that will see land put to better use for more housing, while allowing the development of a neighbourhood park.

The Board also endorsed revoking reserve status for the plots, a move required before any sale can proceed, and endorsed starting public notification of the intent to sell.

At Settlement Road, Fulmen Place and the two Redcrest Avenue lots, the land is a collection of ‘spite strips’ - land vested in Council to limit access to adjoining roads or streets.

In 2020 Kāinga Ora approached Council about acquiring the spite strips and a small piece of land in Game Place as part of its Redcrest Avenue Regeneration Masterplan.

Eke Panuku has worked with Kāinga Ora and determined the net sale proceeds should provide funding to redevelop the Children’s Forest Reserve, with leftover funds able to be allocated to other sites.

The Redcrest Avenue plan proposes new residential blocks serviced via streets at Game and Fulmen.

When completed, it is forecast the Red Hill population could grow by 185 per cent, making access to open space critical.

“Selling the land will allow new homes to be built and the money that comes in can be put to good use by providing a great park for the residents of the new development. It’s a win-win situation,” Catchpole says.

The reserve will be developed to include playspace, areas for socialising and respite, flat spaces for informal kick around play, park furniture and paths and landscaping.

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