Rodney Times : September 16th 2014
YOUR PLACE, YOUR PAPER Tuesday, September 16, 2014 YOUR VOTE IS A POWERFUL THING. VOTE SATURDAY! Brigade benefits from generosity By CARALISE TRAYES LITTLE Tyler Dale must be one of the youngest donors to support a fire brigade. He’s just handed a big jar of coins to Matakana firefighters – money he asked family and friends for instead of presents when he turned 5. ‘‘It blew us away,’’ station officer Larry Patterson says. Tyler had visited the station and met Patterson about six months earlier. ‘‘He came in with his grandfather Peter Marsh and had a look around. ‘‘I took him for a ride in the truck and gave him some stickers,’’ Patterson says. ‘‘He hadn’t forgotten his visit. It must have struck a chord with him.’’ Omaha resident and grand- mother Jenni Marsh says Tyler has been fascinated with fire stations, trucks and firefighters since he was 2. ‘‘When he was talking to his Firefighter fan: Tyler Dale asked for donations for Larry the Matakana firefighter instead of presents for his fifth birthday, and gave $61.20 to the brigade. parents about his birthday party he said he wanted to give money to Larry instead of getting presents,’’ Jenni says. ‘‘He had made up a jar to start collecting, and took it with him everywhere. ‘‘Tyler even took the jar when we went on a family holiday to Raroto- nga. On the plane he got to go up and visit the pilot in the cabin. ‘‘Apparently he asked the pilot for a dollar for Larry and told him about the fire station,’’ Jenni says. ‘‘Everywhere he went he kept asking people for money for Larry.’’ Tyler collected $61.20. Hapu’s gift saves Te Arai coast, expands park The gifting of nearly 200 hectares of northern Rodney coastal land to the Auckland Council for a park is welcomed by many, including opponents of earlier development proposals. The deal is part of a landmark development plan at Te Arai by Te Uri o Hau and Te Arai Coastal Lands, providing an area bigger than Cornwall Park. Rodney ward councillor Penny Webster says the agreement to vest the land in the council will ensure ongoing public access and protection for the significant stretch of east coast. ‘‘Te Uri o Hau has been working towards this plan for its ancestral lands for many years,’’ Webster says. ‘‘We are delighted that an import- ant part of its future includes protecting the significant landscape, conservation and recreation Prime park: The Te Arai deal gifting 196 hectares will ensure ongoing public access and protection, Rodney councillor Penny Webster says. features of iconic Te Arai beach. ‘‘This land joins the existing council-owned headland park to become a 283-hectare regional park. ‘‘Importantly, it will create public open space linkages between Pakiri Beach and Mangawhai Heads – a total 21 kilometres of white sand beaches and magnificent headlands,’’ she says. The initial development proposal for up to 2000 homes, plus a thermal spa, golf course, visitor facilities, camping ground and coastal park, was controversial in its early days and was scaled back to 180 homes. Opposition came from the Te Arai Beach Preservation Society, Department of Conservation, Forest and Bird, Fairy Tern Trust, Environmental Defence Society and the Auckland Council. These groups are likely to remain involved in conservation management. Plans to sell the land to the then Auckland Regional Council in 2010 for $15 million fell through. Council regional and specialist parks manager Mace Ward says planning for the new park will involve creating special areas for protection of shorebirds, a native revegetation plan and dedicated recreational areas. Te Arai features five threatened native bird species, including the northern New Zealand dotterel, New Zealand fairy tern and fern bird. Planning for the new park will ensure that they have a safe area to thrive in, Ward says. ‘‘Dune restoration and revegetat- ing the pine forest with native plantings will get under way in the early stages of park development. ‘‘Walking tracks and mountain bike and horse trails will also be part of our planning – all of which the public will be able to provide input into,’’ he says. Public access to the new park is likely to be ready in 2016-17 following the development of a park management plan and in alignment with the neighbouring subdivision development. The wider development plan for Te Arai includes a new golf course being built by United States financier Ric Kayne and 46 house lots in two rural residential areas. The lots will sit behind at least 200 metres of reserve land on a 5.2 kilometre coastal stretch and will not be visible from the beach. Te Uri o Hau chairman Rawson Wright says the gift is significant for Maori and includes the beach front, wetlands, dunes and the Te Arai Stream.
September 11th 2014