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Save Our Unique Landscape (SOUL)

Save Our Unique Landscape (SOUL)

This week the Save Our Unique Landscape (SOUL) campaign launches a new community newspaper: SOUL TIMES to raise awareness and call the community to action.

Local volunteers will deliver the inaugural issue of SOUL TIMES to households all over Mangere this weekend. Ihumatao pa village resident and SOUL spokesperson Waimarie McFarland encourages her neighbours to “read it, enjoy it, get informed, but most importantly — take action”

McFarland says that SOUL TIMES is being launched to encourage members of the public “to get behind the campaign, and send submissions to Auckland Council by Thursday 5th November to help in the fight to save this unique landscape for future generations.”

SOUL are appalled that the SHA legislation keeps public consultation out of the process. If SHA62 goes ahead, it will turn this 30 hectare green space at Ihumatao into an over-crowded suburban area with 480 high-density houses.

The beautiful coastal land surrounding the proposed SHA and Otuataua Stonefields Historical Reserve currently remains as it has been for over 150 years, paddocks and green space, lacking the roading and infrastructure to support any housing development. SOUL is also concerned that the valued peaceful nature of the Otuataua Reserve will be lost forever and its rare indigenous flora and fauna will be massively impacted by the proposed SHA.

Aucklanders’ enjoyment and use of the adjacent Otuataua Stonefields Historical Reserve, which is publicly owned, will also be compromised by the housing development.

Save Our Unique Landscape (SOUL), campaign has been working hard to ensure objections to SHA62 are heard, despite the thoroughly non-democratic process. SOUL TIMES includes a cut-out submission letter making it simple for all Aucklanders to contribute to the council submissions process.

As only a few adjacent landowners are notified of development under the SHA legislation, SOUL campaigners are encouraging all residents and ratepayers, as public owners of the Otuataua Stonefields Historic Reserve to make a submission. The Stonefields Reserve shares a one kilometre long boundary with the Wallace farm block, proposed site of SHA62.

Community leader Roger Fowler QSM, Director, Mangere East Community Centre

is right behind the newspaper initiative: “This first issue of SOUL TIMES is engaging with the broad community in Mangere to grow solid support for a massive campaign to prevent the desecration of the unique open space around Ihumatao and the Stonefields. Our voice will be heard.”

Fowler adds that it was “people's power that stopped government plans to bulldoze a motorway through Mangere-Otahuhu in 2013. Together we can also save Ihumatao.”

ENDS

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