Waiheke Island to get 186-berth floating marina
Consent has been granted for a 186-berth floating marina to be constructed on Waiheke Island, despite some local opposition.
The decision to permit Kennedy Point Boatharbour Limited to go ahead with the build in Kennedy Point's Putiki Bay was announced on May 18.
It was made by Auckland Council's delegated independent panel of five commissioners, following a week-long hearing in April 2017.
The Kennedy Point Marina will be located west of the existing SeaLink car ferry terminal at Kennedy Point.
It will be accessible from Donald Bruce Road to the south of the breakwater.
The marina will include:
• approximately 186 berths, up to 19 pile moorings and 30 public day berths
• two Swedish-designed floating breakwaters to protect the berths, floating pontoons piers and wharf
• marina office, storage for kayaks and stand-up paddleboards, visitor facilities, café/public space, meeting room and a car park with up to 72 spaces.
Construction is expected to take around 18 months.
The hearing panel was chaired by Greg Hill, formerly a member of the Independent Hearings Panel that heard submissions on the proposed Auckland Unitary Plan.
The panel found that, overall, the marina proposal was consistent with all relevant statutory policy provisions.
It decided adverse environmental effects were fully addressed and either minor - or appropriately avoided, remedied, or mitigated.
Kennedy Point Marina developer Tony Mair said there had been people supporting and opposing the proposed marina.
Be he believed the decision made earlier in the year, to change the design from rock breakwaters to floating attenuators, had helped to reduce any concerns of environmental impact.
"With very little expert evidence put up in opposition, we were hopeful of a positive outcome.
"In my 35 years of marina development, I have never seen a more appropriate site.
"The water is deep, avoiding the need for dredging, and the coastline is already modified.
"The design is also unique – like Waiheke – with all structures, including the car park, marina office, community building, breakwaters and marina fingers floating.
"These structures, to be manufactured by world-renowned company SF Marinas in Sweden, will all be towed into place, mitigating a lot of construction noise and onshore disturbance."
The Save Kennedy Point (SKP) opposition group said it was disappointed adverse effects had not been enough weight.
"SKP, its supporters and members of the Waiheke community are naturally disappointed that, even with all of the evidence showing the effects will be more than minor, the marina has been approved.
"The fact there are 35 pages of conditions is testament that the application is inappropriate," SKP spokesman David Baigent said.
He said it was too early to confirm if an appeal would be lodged with the Environment Court but SKP was not ruling anything out at this stage.
"We are discussing options with our committee, members, legal team and environmental experts."
The Kennedy Point Marina Supporters' Group, representing more than 540 people wanting a berth at the new marina, was delighted with the panel's decision.
Group chairman Todd Parkin said he was thrilled commissioners had taken into account there were two voices on Waiheke.
"For the first time, the boating community of Waiheke will have world-class facilities to safely moor their vessels."
Waiheke Island group Direction Matiatia successfully prevented a marina being built by Waiheke Marinas Limited at island gateway Matiatia in December 2015.
The Environment Court ruled "the promotion of sustainable management of natural and physical resources would not be served by granting consent to the marina."
Waiheke Marinas went into insolvency shortly afterwards.