Updated below, and deadline extended by Council to 30 Jan!
If you go “What park?”, you probably don’t play golf – Chamberlain Park is the only golf course in Auckland that is owned and operated outright by Council. It is located just south of Western Springs on the other side of the motorway.
Council is specifically asking whether the changes to the park should include new ways for people to pass through it – i.e. new walk & cycleways. We say yes, very strongly so! Currently, the Northwestern Cycleway runs along the northern edge of the park, but otherwise it is a big barrier for the local community. You can normally only enter at the main entrance, and thus for most people living around it, it might as well be closed.
Now, it’s understood that golfers may not want to hit walkers and cyclists with their balls – and vice versa. But there are a number of options to make the park – and the nearby Rawalpindi Reserve, which is just as “land-locked” – more useful for the local community, without removing the golfing.
For example, a new path along the western edge of the park could connect the local street network south of the park to the Northwestern Cycleway – from either Parkdale Road and / or Segar Avenue. And this new path could also line up with a new walking / cycling overbridge over the motorway the Waitemata Local Board has been hoping to get one day – connecting over SH16 to near Motions Road, along the course of the stream.
Key things to ask for:
- New walk & cycleways going north-south through the park to better connect Mt Albert, the NW Cycleway, Pt Chev and Western Springs
- The best cycleways are separate from pedestrian paths – both groups should get their own space where possible, especially along the NW Cycleway
- Ask Council to not go overboard with providing car parking in their new park plans!
- Consider whether you would support a (small) part of the park to become housing to pay for these upgrades to happen sooner (with Council funding for parks so under threat, otherwise this may stay a paper plan)
[Update: Draft concepts we were since shown by the designers do include quite a few potential new walking and cycling links through the park – so all the more reason to write in or drop by to ensure they survive into the final plans. Not so good is the proposal to add lots of car parking so people can have an easier time driving to the park! Make sure you tell them that’s that is the worst way to activate a park!]
Please come to the Open Day on 1 December, 5-7pm, or fill in the online form. CAA has already met with the designers to to talk about the proposed changes and what we would love to see – but Council needs to know there’s popular demand!