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Challenge to Council: protect heritage areas

26 March 2008

Challenge to Council: protect heritage areas

“I was delighted to read in the Herald recently that the Council rejected a plan to demolish 7600 homes in Auckland’s heritage suburbs and was reassured when the Mayor react with anger and disbelief to the idea,” said Judith Tizard.

“I am pleased to see that at last Auckland Mayor and Council are having this discussion following the work of the previous Mayor and Council. I challenge the Mayor and Council to do more to protect our city’s precious heritage sites.”

“Local council must be the lead agency in protecting heritage buildings. Local councils must work to register the important buildings and precincts in their areas to protect them from destruction or ‘death by a thousand cuts’ as Auckland grows.”

“Auckland has been talking about intensification for more than 15 years. The 1999 Growth Strategy proposed a doubling in population by 2040. Everyone who read that document called on Council to manage Auckland’s growth so that it does not occur at the expense of our important buildings and neighbourhoods.”

“Auckland’s heritage sites are part of New Zealand's unique and diverse national identity and are the living foundation of our heritage. Protecting our physical heritage is an important investment in our history, and our future.”

“The Labour-led government is continuing to reinforce how important that history is by allocating funding towards the protection of moveable cultural heritage and to other heritage preservation through supporting organisations such as the Historic Places Trust,” said Judith Tizard.

Amendments to the Resource Management Act (RMA) passed in 2003 made historic heritage protection a matter of national importance – which local authorities must recognise and provide for in the exercise of their functions and powers.

“The Labour-led government has had an ongoing commitment to the culture and heritage sector since 1999 and much progress has been made. Central government spending through arts, culture, heritage and broadcasting increased from $97 million (GST exclusive) in 1999 to $290 million (GST exclusive) in 2007,” said Judith Tizard.

ENDS


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