Disappointed, gutted, dismayed – reactions to $300m Bayswater Marina apartment proposal
“Disappointed, gutted, dismayed” – that’s two group’s reactions to $300 million plans for Bayswater Marina where 121 apartments are planned by multimillionaire Simon Herbert.
Paddy Stafford-Bush, Bayswater Community Committee spokesman, said: “We are disappointed and gutted that the proposals are disrespectful of the primary purpose of the zoning.”
Richard Steel for the Auckland Marina Users’ Association said: “We are is dismayed to see a residential development of this scale proposed at Bayswater Marina.”
But Auckland councillor Chris Darby said Herbert had shown a strong willingness to ascertain what locals thought.
“He wants genuine community engagement. It’s not just a residential development. It’s significantly fewer [apartments] than what it was originally a few years ago. The residential component is not of a single design. They’re wanting to break it up into something more humane and unique rather than one architectural typology,” Darby said this week.
Stafford-Bush said: “It’s a marina surrounded by a foreshore reserve which is a public and open recreational space.
“It is a playground for future generations of children. It is also a transport hub for ferries and buses to serve a rapidly growing population.
“The key issues for us are the importance of the ferry terminal and how that could be affected, recreational space, continued access to the boating ramp, the scale of the proposed development, public access to the foreshore and body corporate ownership of the esplanade. The primary objective of the land’s zoning is as a marina.”
The apartments wouldn’t relieve the need for affordable housing, she said.
The Auckland Unitary Plan allowed for some residential development at Bayswater but the scheme was way out of scale and belittled the intention of the zoning, she said.
Herbert wants resource consent to redevelop the existing marina reclamation land with public open spaces, landscaping, apartments, terraced housing, commercial activities and parking in the Bayswater maritime precinct.
The master plan, architectural plans for the apartments, landscape plans, a high analysis, geotechnical investigations, acoustic and transport assessments, a report on construction, stormwater outfalls and engineering drawings are all now available to view.
Steel said housing was badly needed but could be located in many locations around Auckland.
“There are no such alternatives available for marinas,” he said.
The precinct plans at Bayswater were mirrored by similar schemes for Pine Harbour and Hobsonville marinas.
“If the waterfront land at all three marinas is developed to the extent desired by Herbert, three of Auckland’s largest marinas will lose significant established and irreplaceable land-based facilities, suffer degraded functionality as a marina and be unavailable to meet future growth in marine recreational activity,” Steel said.
Auckland’s population was forecast to grow by about 35 per cent in the next 35 years but where would more marina berths go, he asked.
The city would need more boat ramps, haul-out and service areas, marine industry and commercial services, dry stack storage, coastguard, ferry operations, club rooms, cafes and waterfront recreational space for pedestrians, board sailors, kite surfers and space for waka and other marine recreational sports areas, Steel said.
Brianna Parkinson, of the committee backed comments by Bayswater Marina Berth Holders chairman Paul Glass about the timing of the notification during alert level 3.
The plan was notified on Monday and submissions must be in by November 9.
“Public notification during alert level 3 poses considerable challenges for connecting with the community.The committee and the berth holders did ask the council to extend the usual 20 working day submission period in recognition of the alert levels and the high public interest in the redevelopment.Bayswater Marina Holdings opposed this extension, and the council decided to stay with the 20 days period,” Parkinson said.
A survey of people in the area found 93 per cent of Bayswater residents valued green spaces and paths giving access around the water’s edge and 61 per cent would use the area more if there was an increase in publicly accessible park areas and green spaces, she said of findings from that questionnaire in 2018.
Residential was of limited or no value according to 62 per cent and there was concern that over-development would detract from the area, Parkinson said.
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