Ponsonby Park – A staged approach notification, 23 December 2021

Below is the email the Community-Led Design Group received in regard to the progression of Ponsonby Park.

In response to the impacts of COVID-19, Auckland Council in July 2020 released an Emergency Budget which required reduced funding to balance both our operating and capital budgets.  These impacts continued into the development of the 2021-2031 Long-term Plan (Recovery Budget), where tough decisions had to be made on priorities for the capital programme. Council’s first priority was to maintain and renew our current assets and to look after what we have before investing in new assets.

This affected a number of special-purpose funded projects, including 254 Ponsonby Road, which currently has a secured budget of $5.5M through the sale of 200 Victoria Street West.  As we move into planning the programme for the 2022/2023 financial year, we are now able to start progressing stage one at 254 Ponsonby Road.   This will include budget for detailed design and community engagement in 2022/2023 being made available two years earlier than previously communicated, followed by consent and construction from 2023/2024 onwards.

In 2022 staff will also be seeking an in-principle future budget allocation from the One Local Initiative (OLI) programme via a report to the Finance and Performance Committee for the remainder of the project funding. 

Should funding be secured through the OLI programme it is unlikely to be made available before FY2025 and therefore a staged approach to the development of 254 Ponsonby Rd will be considered, in consultation with the relevant community stakeholders. A staged approach could involve developing the open space elements first (green space to west / more formal civic space fronting Ponsonby Rd as per the approved plan) and undertaking building design / construction at a later date and as determined by successfully securing OLI funding.      

A project manager will be assigned and liaise with you early in the new financial year (starting July 2022).

The Community-Led Design Group looks forward to the commencement of this much needed and desired project that has been over twenty years in the making. Bring it on!

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