Neighbours angry as 10 houses crammed onto two properties

Residents (from left) David Liu, Lucy Ye and Shirley Inggs. Photo supplied

More than 30 residents in a small Bucklands Beach street are up in arms about a development which will see 10 properties built on two sections.

The residents’ grievance follows a similar protest about a development in Struan Place in Highland Park (Times, June 14).

Residents in Richard Avenue, Bucklands Beach, are so incensed that every resident but one signed a petition

expressing concern about the intensity of the development in a narrow street that directly links Macleans College, Bucklands Beach Intermediate and Pigeon Mountain Primary.

The petition, initiated by resident Lucy Ye, acknowledges that it is appropriate for the land on the two sections of 4 and 6 Richard Avenue to be developed.

“However we are concerned about the scale and intensity of the proposal to construct 10 properties on the two sections.”

Another resident, Nick Cull, said residents are “profoundly concerned” about the additional traffic movement and parking congestion that the development will produce by adding 10 households on just two properties.

There were also a significant number of children moving up and down the street.

Also worrying was stormwater management on this site and the implications of this on surrounding properties and the impact on Auckland’s environment.

“We also wish to express our concern about the development’s infringement of height regulations, Mr Cull said.

“We are signalling to you our concerns and hopefully shining a light on the need for public discussion with residents before intense developments such as that in a narrow street.”

Resource consent, he said, was passed quickly late last year.

“Our petition expressed disappointment at the absence of any notification or consultation with residents about a development of such intensity,” Cull said.

“We found out about it once the real estate agent began to promote the 10 houses.”

Pakuranga MP Simeon Brown said he will meet residents on Friday to discuss their concerns.

“Richard Avenue has traffic and parking issues due to its proximity to a number of schools,” he said.

“This development will put further pressure on this street and I am concerned that the council has not taken this into account in its consenting process.

“I was disappointed by the response residents received from Auckland Council, which essentially said they were hoping for the best when it came to addressing these potential issues.”

There are no plans to deal with the extra vehicles that will now reside on Richard Avenue, he said, and with parking in the surrounding area at a premium, especially during school hours, it’s going to make transport issues in the area even worse.

“I am also interested to understand more about what notification was provided to residents of this development prior to the consent being granted.”

Residents are unhappy with the intensive development on two sections at 4 and 6 Richard Avenue, Bucklands Beach. Photo Nick Krause

Meanwhile a letter to Mr Cull from Auckland Council’s James Dowding (manager resource consents south) in April said the proposal for a 10 unit and associated 10 lot subdivision… was approved under delegated authority by council staff on December 20, 2017.

“While I note that the proposal triggered a number of matters for resource consent, in an overall sense the proposal was considered to fit into the scale of development that is contemplated under the Auckland Unitary Plan – Operative in Part (AUP(OP)),” Mr Dowding wrote.

“The AUP(OP) is, in part, a response for the need to accommodate the huge growth currently being experienced and further predicted for Auckland. For instance, in the last three-four years Auckland has had to accommodate population growth of approximately the size of Tauranga’s population.”

The previous legacy District Plans did not have a strategy to deal with this type of growth.

“Accordingly the AUP(OP) allows for outcomes quite different to what communities were used to in their suburbs, and what has been consented to at 4-6 Richard Avenue represents a type of development that can be achieved (subject to resource consent) across most parts of suburban Auckland under the AUP(OP).

“This proposal is not unlike other developments that have been approved in the eastern surburbs. There will be quite a change in the face of Auckland between the current suburban built environment and that allowed by the AUP(OP).”

While there was a widespread concern by residents in the Richards Ave area about this development, council was not in a position to change or cancel the granted resource consent.

“I am of the opinion that council followed the correct procedures in assessing the proposal, including not requiring the application to be processed on a notified basis.”