Ponsonby Park - October Update

The good news continues.

The Waitematā Local Board’s top priority, ‘One Local Initiative’ project is the creation of Ponsonby Park, the new civic space at 254 Ponsonby Road. It has been the focus of their considerable advocacy work on behalf of the community since 2015 when they established the volunteer Community-Led Design group.

As Board Chair and Parks portfolio holder Richard Northey advised in September 2020: ”We also confirmed that proceeds from the sale of a commercial building at 200 Victoria Street go to fund the Ponsonby Park project at 254 Ponsonby Road and urged that that project only be delayed by a year. The Local Board does not want to see the development of Ponsonby Park delayed by more than a year due to the impacts of Covid”.

With the allocated budget from the sale of 200 Victoria Street West of $5.5 million now available (and that legally can only be spent on the development of the Ponsonby Park Civic Space) we are excitedly waiting to hear when Stage One of the development will begin. It is no longer reliant on any LTP (Long term plan) funding to do so.

We are confident the Waitematā Local Board will persuade Council to return to the original two stage project. Once this is agreed to, Stage One could be put back into the Local Board work programme for 2022-23 and detailed design and consent work be commenced as early as next year!

The original plan for Ponsonby Park was as a two stage development.

Stage 1
Detailed design and consents. Open space development.

Stage 2
The buildings.

Pre-Covid, the sale of 200 Victoria Street West would have enabled Ponsonby Park to be completed in only one stage. Yet this ‘all-at-once’ plan is not essential, nor given the current inflationary economic conditions, even desirable.

The local community, local businesses, and visitors to Ponsonby have been waiting for twenty-one years since the need for the new civic space in Ponsonby was first identified. We think this is long enough.

Let’s get it done. (JENNIFER WARD)


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Published 1 October 2021