Talks to start over turning Port of Onehunga into a community space for all of Auckland
POAL negotiating sale of Port of Onehunga
Thursday, 12 November, 2015 – 08:21
“Ports of Auckland is negotiating with Panuku Development Auckland to sell the Port of Onehunga and make it available for public use”, chief executive Tony Gibson said today.
“This has come about because Manukau Harbour is too shallow for modern shipping, making the port at Onehunga unsuitable for freight operations. Over the past few years we have been consolidating Onehunga operations at our main port on the WaitematÄ Harbour.
The construction of a new cement import facility at the WaitematÄ port, to be completed in 2016, is the final phase in the move of freight operations from Onehunga. This enables us to make our land at the Port of Onehunga available to Aucklanders, just as Princes Wharf, Queens Wharf, the Viaduct Harbour and Wynyard Quarter have been opened up for public use and enjoyment.”
“By improving our efficiency we have been able to consolidate our operations, halve our land footprint and still continue to serve Auckland and New Zealand’s growing freight needs. This has enabled large areas of the WaitematÄ waterfront to be opened up for public use and we are delighted to be able to do the same for Onehunga and the Manukau.”
“Ports of Auckland is New Zealand’s first, busiest and most efficient container port, as well as a vital tourism hub. We are keeping up with the international trend toward larger ships and we are evolving to meet Auckland’s growing freight demands while taking up less space,” added Mr Gibson.
John Dalzell, Chief Executive of Panuku Development Auckland said “Onehunga town centre and its surrounds is identified as a key location where we will facilitate long-term residential and/or commercial developments that deliver on one of the objectives of the Auckland Plan – to radically improve the quality of urban living.
Within that, transforming the Onehunga port site to facilitate more public uses is seen as the key to unlocking the economic, recreation, tourism and transportation potential of the Manukau Harbour.
On that basis Panuku Development Auckland is considering the acquisition of the site.
Technical and environmental due diligence on the site has been completed and we hope to enter into a conditional agreement for the site in the coming months.
Should that happen we will be committed to achieving a high standard of urban amenity and public access across the site and along the coastal edge.
Panuku appreciates the importance of the site to the local community and once an agreement is finalised it will undertake a comprehensive master planning exercise that will include the local board and key stakeholders.”
With Onehunga Town Centre listed as a “Unlock” class redevelopment (formerly known as Type 2) under Panuku Redevelopment Auckland, flipping an under-used port on the Manukau Harbour would be deemed fitting. Especially as it allows the Manukau Harbour to have its own “Wynyard Quarter” just as the Waitemata Harbour does.
Sadly though this could all be undone if the destructive East-West Truckway which starts technically next to the Port of Onehunga site and runs along the Manukau foreshore to Southdown in the east that would sever Onehunga from her shoreline of that Mangere Inlet.