Uncertain future for historic Mt Eden building

EMMA WHITTAKER
Last updated 05:00 26/12/2012
Mt Eden Tea Rooms

AT RISK: The historic tea kiosk on Mt Eden's summit.

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The future of a historic Mt Eden tea house is uncertain after it was found to be at risk if hit by an earthquake.

The kiosk, on the northern slopes of Mt Eden, was closed following a structural assessment in February which found the building did not meet building standards.

Strengthening work began earlier this month and is expected to be completed by March.

The kiosk was built in 1926 and has in the past been used as tea rooms and restaurant.

Richard Hollier, Auckland Council's acting regional and specialist parks manager, said the work would maintain the historical integrity of the kiosk and ensure it could be reopened to the public.

But its future use has not been determined.

''There are many options available that will enhance the visitor experience on Maungawhau (Mt Eden). This will be worked through with the Albert-Eden Local Board, iwi, the local community and interested stakeholders,'' Hollier said.

Local board chairman Peter Haynes said most locals believed the building should be converted into a visitor centre and cafe.

''I personally would be quite happy to see the mana whenua run it because of the way they have been treated historically and the inadequacy of the reparation up until this point,'' Haynes said.

He said the final decision would have to be reserved until co-governorship has been established for the mountain.

Haynes understands the kiosk would be used as a visitors centre in the meantime.

Mt Eden was one of 14 volcanic cones included in a deed settled this year that vested their ownership in the Tamaki Collective.

Under the agreement the mountains will be co-governed by the Tamaki Collective, a group of iwi, along with council and Crown representatives.

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