Central Leader : April 15th 2011
3 CENTRAL LEADER, APRIL 15, 2011 NEWS MASSIVE SCHOOL UNIFORM SALE Hillsborough Primary School Uniform NOW 30% OFF* Available at Postie Onehunga, Onehunga Mall, Ph 636 5460 *While stocks last Warehouse gets go-ahead By HANNAH SPYKSMA IT S A red hot victory for retail giant The Warehouse whose appli- cation for a big box development in Royal Oak has been approved. But not everyone is pleased with the result. A decision released earlier this week grants resource consent for the company to build a new store on the corner of Mt Albert and Pah roads. The proposal is an efficient use of resources and will maintain amenity values and the quality of the environment, the decision says. The judgement follows a three- day hearing in mid-March, where community members and the Auck- land Council voiced a range of con- cerns against plans to independent commissioners. It s just not the right location, Puketapapa Local Board member Julie Fairey maintained throughout the hearing. But the three commissioners established that the development will bring no more than minor effects to the surrounding com- munity. Their report says the proposal, including the removal of two heri- tage trees and construction of a cafe on site, has positive urban design features . The 7500-square metre complex is proposed for a site at 100 Pah Rd -- currently overgrown and unused -- and purchased by The Warehouse several years ago. Plans for the store, set to operate between 7am and 10pm seven days a week, include more than 400 carpark spaces, road-widening on Pah Rd, a change of residential zoning on Mt Albert Rd and an additional three-store retail com- plex. Warehouse spokeswoman Fiona Shilton says the company is very pleased with the decision. But the company would not com- ment any further on why this site was chosen, or how the organisation will involve the community in plan- ning and construction decisions. Earlier this year council consul- tants recommended the original resource consent application, sub- mitted last November, be declined. A lack of integration with the existing Royal Oak town centre, set less than a kilometre to the north- east of the building site, was given as one of the main reason for rec- ommendation. But the commissioners say there is nothing in the district plan which concretely defines how future devel- opment should proceed within the area. Arguments that the Warehouse would operate as a separate retail destination, detracting from existing shops were also dismissed by the commissioners. They agreed with The Warehouse that being able to shop closer to home will benefit the community. Ms Fairey says although she is disappointed that commissioners did not listen to the concerns of the community and the council, she accepts their decision. She will now be consulting with residents to hear their opinion on the decision and will assess future steps based on this feedback. We will be looking at options and obviously if there is a need to appeal and take things to the Environment Court then we will need to do a bit of thinking and work really hard over the next few months to put a strong case forward. A public meeting will be held by Puketapapa Local Board members towards the end of April. She says affected residents can call 620-9257 or email Julie.Fai firstname.lastname@example.org to find out more about the decision and how to have their say. Intrepid trio aims to go 5000km in a rickshaw Across India: Andrew Williams, Helen Saunders and Sarah Davidson are ready to make their 5000km journey across India in a rickshaw. Photo: KELSEY FLETCHER By KELSEY FLETCHER It will be survival of the strongest and fittest as three adventurers travel across India this week in the most unlikely vehicle -- a three- wheeled 150cc rickshaw. Mt Eden residents Andrew Wil- liams, Helen Saunders and Sarah Davidson left for India on Wednesday to take part in the annual Rickshaw Run, a 5000km trek across the subcontinent to raise money for the International Rescue Corps and the Red Cross. Mr Williams says he heard about the Rickshaw Run from a friend in the United Kingdom last April. I thought it would be something unique. I ve always liked an adven- ture. I m not one for package holidays, he says. With 70 spots available Mr Wil- liams quickly booked one, ordered visas and began preparing a web- page for the team, aptly named Up the Boohai. Our original charity was the International Rescue Corps but after the Christchurch earthquake we decided to also sponsor the Red Cross. So far we ve made $7000 for Red Cross and £600 for the IRC, he says. Ms Saunders says the trip will be an exciting opportunity for them. We ll meet locals and other teams. We re hoping they re going to help us out when we break down, she says. Unfortunately breaking down on their massive journey through 40 degree heat, questionable terrain and the Himalayas is inevitable in their unreliable machine. We re bottom of the pecking order, Mr Williams says. It s a matter of when we break down. I m expecting to lose a fuel tank or exhaust and maybe roll over. Mr Williams says the first thing people say to them is that they are going to get stomach bugs. It just seems to be tied in with the place. We re prepared though -- we ve got medicine, baby wipes and toilet paper, he says. The trio has mixed emotions about what they ve got themselves into, a factor being no one on the team has any skill in mechanics. They have planned to take turns driving and hope to unleash the full power of their rickshaw. It s dangerous and risky -- the rickshaw isn t built for what we re doing, Mr Williams says. Ms Davidson says it is different from any type of travel they ve done before. It s a long, long way and it s hard to mentally prepare yourself -- but that s the point of it really, to do something different, she says. Visit www.uptheboohai.co.nz to donate or learn more.
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April 20th 2011