Friday, 23 April 2010

Two Important Meetings in May

Margaret Rowley, Alan Taylor and I informally met Tara Smith (Consultation Leader) and Philip Crossland (Project Manager) at a hastily set up meeting on Wednesday just to get a sense of where the CCC is coming from.Tara and Philip are aware of the checkered history of this project and the mistrust that resulted. Whether Dieter (CCC arborist) and Yvonne (Councillor, Papanui Ward) are now open minded on this matter remains to be seen, but but the Council appears keen to get this project done well this time, and seem genuinely interested in the opinions of residents. I remain unsure.

Margaret has organised a meeting on Sunday 2nd May at 2pm in the Papanui RSA Upham Room to stimulate discussion of the issues prior to the CCC workshop. The main issues are:
  1. The trees (mostly scarlet oaks). Several of these are diseased and are very likely to need removal. Pruning will be required to give a 1m clearance around overhead lines (a legal requirement). Can trees simply be replaced as they die through a process of natural attrition?
  2. Drainage. Kerb and channel work may damage roots and it is not clear what effect this will have on the trees. The Council may need to perform some test holes to assess the roots where kerb and channel work is to be done. Existing seal around tree roots may be having a detrimental effect on trees currently.
  3. Parking and traffic flow. The width of the street should allow several options for parking - e.g. angle parking, grass pavers. What about judder bars here and there, a rumble strip at the corner, or a pedestrian island at Harewood Road?
  4. Underground wiring is not up for discussion -- we are a low traffic volume local road and a low CCC priority for underground wiring.

The purpose of the CCC workshop at 4-6pm on 26 May at the Methodist Church Hall, Corner of Harewood Rd and Chapel Street is to look at the options available to us, and also for us to express our opinions to the CCC, so hopefully we will have thought about these issues before the workshop. Everyone attending the workshop will get an information pack 2 weeks beforehand (which will apparently include results of a traffic survey, and an opinion from an "independent" North Island arborist). It is important that as many residents as possible get to this.

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