Ponsonby Civic space – May update

The new artwork decorating the on-site hoarding at 254 Ponsonby Road, designed and realised by the talented Mroscarlow, is complete. And it is magnificent! A taste of the vibrancy and energy that is on the way for the site as the old liquor outlet transforms into an active and beautiful civic destination that will enliven and delight all of Ponsonby. 
A lot has happened since last month’s Community-Led-Design Group (CLDG) update. 
Resource Consent for the deconstruction of the building has been granted. Parts of the existing structure will now be removed completely, opening up the frontage along Ponsonby Road, thereby creating the ‘flexible urban plaza’ whilst vertical elements will be retained and repurposed, to create the ‘green discovery room’ further into the civic space. 
Viewing portals have been created at strategic points along the hoarding so everyone (big & small) can see the evolution of the site as it unfolds. It’s going to get EXCITING!
Sustainability is a core principle in the development of the new civic space. Solar photovoltaic panels will be installed on the repurposed canopy roof, enabling the site to generate electricity. Water storage tanks will be sited beneath the new floor of the ‘urban canopy’ room providing irrigation for the gardens. A community garden proposal, with involvement by local schools and leadership from the well-established Sanctuary Mahi Whenua Gardens, has been put to the local board for consideration. With one in five New Zealand children (21.3%) living in households where food runs out, it is concerning that the number of food-insecure tamariki has increased over recent years. (Annual Update of Key Results 2022/23 Annual Health Survey, Ministry of Health). 
These on-site applied technologies and activities will – and an onsite community garden could – provide an educational facility for practical and accessible resilience building.
Coordination with mana whenua and contractors for an appropriate time and date for the karakia and the turning of the soil blessing is underway. The karakia will signify the construction phase of the civic space development, with the enabling work due to be mostly completed by the end of this month. We also await with great anticipation and excitement for the reveal of the name mana whenua has gifted the site. How lucky and happy are we to have been given this taonga! Nga mihi nui.
Happy days. 
For more information or to contact the CLDG visit the website; 254ponsonbyrd.org.nz or see our Facebook pages; Ponsonby Park, or 254 Ponsonby Road.

Auckland Council and Waitematā Local Board are delivering this exciting project…
MROSCARLOW aka Ross Liew – genius artist ⭐️ https://www.instagram.com/mroscarlow/
The Southern end of the hoarding mural
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