Council Creates New Reserve
Manukau City Council has recently purchased a large block of land to create areas of open public space. The purchase was made after Council calculated there would be a shortage of land available for active recreation to meet current and future needs of the City.
The $8.9 million 48-hectare block is located within the Flat Bush catchment and is covered by the Development East Tamaki Concept Plan. The catchment has been identified by Council as suitable for urban and semi-urban development to accommodate up to 40 000 people by 2020.
The new purchase has secured much needed public open space to cater for this increased growth and provide some land for stormwater management, as well as placing 10 hectares of high quality native bush into public ownership.
While Sir Barry Curtis Park will have some land set aside for active recreational purposes, it will not be enough to meet the considerable demand from sporting groups and clubs. This is due to a shortage of land available for sports fields in the Howick, Otara and Manurewa wards.
Development on the new reserve is still some time away as Council concentrates on developing Sir Barry Curtis Park. Ree Anderson, Manager Environmental Policy and Monitoring, says taking a proactive approach in purchasing land for future use saves money in the long-term.
“At some stage during the development of the Flat Bush catchment we would have to purchase such land for public open space and stormwater management purposes. If we have an opportunity to buy now it will reduce future costs and give developers some certainty about the future form of the area. In the meantime the reserve will be leased,” says Ms Anderson.
The 48-hectare block was sold to Council on 19 December 2000 by a private landowner that had operated an ostrich farm on the site.
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