The controversial plan to reduce parking along The Esplanade on Manly Beach by installing bollards goes before the public this week.
Initially Auckland Council and the Hibiscus & Bays Local Board considered the process of installing the 300 bollards routine, and did not open it to public feedback. But community opposition after the plan was made public in Hibiscus Matters’ October 11 edition resulted in a re-think and an agreement that consultation was called for. This also meant postponing installation of the bollards until next year.
The bollards are designed to reduce erosion and damage caused to tree roots by cars parking on the berm.
Local Board chair, Gary Brown, says that people have parked on the reserve for years, but now with so many more vehicles, it’s easy to see the damage being caused to tree roots, grass and sand dunes.
He says Council coastal and arborist experts advise that if people continue to park there, that section of beachfront will deteriorate into sand and gravel, as the eastern end of The Esplanade has.
Brown says that some residents are concerned that the bollard installation could lead to a shortage of car parks. He says Council staff will monitor the current parking situation over summer and provide feedback to the local board early next year.
Then, should the bollard installation go ahead later next year, parking in streets near the beach will be monitored during the 2022/2023 summer period. If there are serious issues, Council staff will review the parking with the local board.
Consultation opened on Monday, November 22 and runs until December 10.
Have your say at https://akhaveyoursay.aucklandcouncil.govt.nz
• The proposal is to drive about 300 bollards into the ground, without concrete, under the supervision of arborists. The bollards are about 60cm high and placed about 1.2–1.5m apart. • They would be installed along about 320m of The Esplanade from Manly Sailing Club to Cross Street, removing about 330m of parking. • People would still be able to park on the beach side, between Cross Street and Beach Road. There would also be limited parking on the beach side of the road, between Cross Street and the sailing club, in areas that will cause the least harm to the dunes and trees.