Turnstone Capital held a meeting on July 27 to update the public on the Stubbs Farm development, north of Warkworth, and revealed a host of new public amenities it is considering, including an outdoor cinema, a large playground and a food truck market.
These features, along with higher intensity apartment buildings in a revised ‘local centre’, are part of plan changes being submitted to the Auckland Council by Turnstone Capital in light of the Warkworth Structure plan, which was finalised last month.
Turnstone Capital CEO Jamie Peters said the higher density housing would be a change for Warkworth, but would provide an affordable option for young, first home buyers to get on the property ladder.
Members of the crowd expressed concerns that there would not be enough parking for all of the new households. However, architect Grant Neill said residential parking bays would solve this problem.
The other major change in the submission was a request for Council to change the zoning of an area of land between Falls Road and the Mahurangi River from light industrial to single house residential.
Planning consultant Burnette O’Connor called on the public to submit to the Council in favour of this suggestion and facilitators were at the meeting with template submissions to facilitate this.
“Cycleways and paths along the river won’t be achieved if we have light industrial zones on both sides of the river,” she said.
Landscape architect Mike Farrow presented his vision of how a green corridor, that followed the Mahurangi River from the development through to Warkworth, could look in 15 years.
He said it could feature a boardwalk bush track, as well as a cycle path all the way from the Warkworth Showgrounds through to town.
CEO Jamie Peters said the thought of this area becoming a light industrial zone was “horrifying”, but if things were done right, it could be an amenity that would draw visitors from Auckland.
Roger Williams, from the Warkworth Area Liaison Group, voiced concern that the development would cause increased traffic congestion until the Western link road was eventually built.
“Somehow, we have to put the pressure on developers and Auckland Transport (AT) to bring the Western link on early,” he said.
Burnette O’Connor said she was all in favour of the public putting pressure on AT.
“We’ve looked at funding agreements with AT and all our plans incorporate the Western link. We have even designed it,” she said.
Turnstone’s plans show a four-lane Western link road, starting at the intersection of Falls Road and Mansel Drive and cutting north through the development.
“The only missing piece is that AT refuses to engage, despite the fact that Council documents show that this will be the Western link road,” Ms O’Connor said.
Littoralis Landscape Architecture principal Mike Farrow presented his vision for a boardwalk along the Mahurangi River.