Warkworth Town Hall was the venue for two information sessions last month to report back to the community on planning for Warkworth’s future urban growth.
A series of display boards summarised community feedback on Warkworth’s Structure Plan at the information sessions.
The feedback was gathered during workshops in June, where groups of community members were invited outline a land use and supporting infrastructure plan on maps that were provided.
Auckland Council planner Ryan Bradley says by overlaying the maps on top of one another, it was possible to see there was a lot of agreement on land use and infrastructure, even though the ideas came from groups working independently of each other.
Key points that emerged were:
• A desire to enhance road transport connectivity. In particular, for a western collector (connecting Woodcocks Road to SH1), Matakana link road (connecting Matakana and Sandspit Roads) and a southern interchange (allowing access to the new Puhoi to Warkworth motorway from the south of Warkworth).
• Support for a walking and cycling network, separate from main arterials and connected to waterways and green spaces.
• A desire to expand existing industrial areas and create new industrial areas close to the new motorway.
• A desire to maintain Warkworth Town Centre as the primary centre, but creating two to three additional centres with five to 10 shops in each.
• Support for at least two new primary schools and one new college.
• Support for a new hospital.
• Creation of parks close to new centres and schools.
Auckland Council will incorporate suggestions into a draft structure plan to be released in November, when the public will have a further opportunity to provide feedback.
Feedback related to transport has already begun to inform the Supporting Growth Programme – an initiative of Auckland Transport and the New Zealand Transport Agency to develop transport plans to cater for Warkworth’s expansion over the next 30 years.
Supporting Growth was also present at the Town Hall sessions with display boards illustrating current transport options being considered and inviting public comment.
These offered refinements of transport suggestions made for the structure plan and included further suggestions for improving Warkworth’s eastern connections. Among these was a proposal to link McKinney Road in the south to Matakana Road in the north via a new road that would veer east of the Warkworth Town Centre and require the construction of a new bridge over the Mahurangi River.
The public has until September 7 to give feedback on Supporting Growth’s initial suggestions. An online feedback form is available at supportinggrowth.govt.nz.
More than 1000ha of land has been identified for future urban growth in Warkworth, with the town’s population expected to grow five-fold over the next three decades.