Debate over how to fill a gaping hole

ROSE CAWLEY
Last updated 05:00 11/06/2014
residents three kings
Rose Cawley

UNHAPPY RESIDENTS: Greg McKeown, Dick Bellamy, Garry Bryant and Alan Bigelow are concerned about how Fletcher Building will develop the Three Kings Quarry. 

Draft plan
END RESULT: An illustration of Fletcher Building’s plan for the quarry.

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What to do with a gaping hole in Three Kings has a company and community at odds.

Residents are worried about Fletcher Building's plans to develop the Three Kings Quarry site.

Resident Greg McKeown says the main issue is the height Fletcher Building plans to restore the quarry to.

McKeown says an earlier plan was to fill the quarry at the level of Mt Eden Rd across to the playing fields.

"Now they are going back on that and going in a new direction."

Fletcher Building released its Three Kings Master Plan, which earmarks the site for a development of up to 1500 apartments, in February.

McKeown says in the plan it appears the quarry will be filled to 15m below the level of Mt Eden Rd.

"There are going to be four-storey apartments on the rim of the quarry and then five or six storeys going down into the quarry."

The plan would put pressure on infrastructure, increase traffic congestion and make public access difficult, he says.

Fletcher spokesman Philip King says the company wants to create a vibrant, sustainable urban village.

"The masterplan will set the framework for a world class community that Aucklanders will want to live and invest in."

The benefits of refilling the quarry to 15m below Mt Eden Rd will be outlined in the private plan change application, King says.

The company has been working with the Puketapapa Local Board on its Three Kings Plan since early 2013, King says.

"Fletcher is very comfortable that its vision aligns with the vast majority of the precinct plan objectives."

South Epsom Planning Group president Dick Bellamy says Fletchers steamrolled the process by releasing its own plan months earlier.

"In the middle of this they were having their own conversations, working on a very detailed plan which sabotages any real community involvement."

The overhaul of Three Kings shouldn't be up to one company, Bellamy says.

Residents need to ensure their voices are heard through the Three Kings Plan, he says.

Puketapapa Local Board deputy chairman Harry Doig says both plans have a place in the pursuit for a better precinct.

"There is no one party in this that owns all the answers. We all have a contribution to make," Doig says.

HAVE A SAY

 

Get in quick to have your say on the plan that will shape the future of Three Kings.

The draft Three Kings Plan, which outlines the strategic direction for growth and development in the area, has been released by Puketapapa Local Board and is open for final public consultation until July 11.

The draft puts forward five key goals: to enhance Big King and the public open spaces network, revitalise the Three Kings town centre, improve connections between people and places, encourage high qaulity residential development and develop a sense of identity.

Deputy chair Harry Doig says the plan is not perfect. "There are changes that need to be made. People might have suggestions that we haven't even thought of - the board is open to anything," Doig says.

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The plan is broken into two phases.

The first has a particular focus on the redevelopment of the quarry site while stage two looks at the town centre, local businesses and council reserve land.

Doig says the Three Kings quarry gets a lot of attention but it is important that the town centre isn't forgotten.

"We want the town centre to be something that is interesting and vibrant.

" It should be a destination that people actually want to go to, not something covered in carparks that is just a service centre," he says.

The final Three Kings Plan will be used to inform decisions made on submissions to the Proposed Auckland Unitary Plan regarding the Three Kings area.

Go to shapeauckland.co.nz to view the draft plan or view a copy at the Puketapapa Local Board office at the Fickling Centre or at the Mt Roskill Library.

An open day will also be held on June 17 from noon till to 5pm at Three Kings Plaza.

- Central Leader

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