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Home arrow Events arrow Ngunguru Sandspit: What's at stake?
Ngunguru Sandspit: What's at stake? PDF Print
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Action - Events
Written by Darlene Buckley, Focus magazine   
Thursday, 28 January 2010

Open House and Presentation at Ngunguru Hall, Saturday 6 February, noon – 5pm

Robin Kearns and Damian Collins

2pm Presentation: Ngunguru Sandspit: What's at stake?
The results of an independent 2-year investigation into community views, ownership and future options for Ngunguru Sandspit, by geographers Damian Collins (University of Alberta, Canada) and Robin Kearns (University of Auckland) will be presented and open discussion encouraged. The written report will also be available.

Ngunguru Sandspit Protection Society, Inc (NSaPS) is pleased to welcome Damian and Robin back to the coast for an Open House at the Hall on Saturday afternoon, 6 Feb. Damian will make the long journey from mid-winter Alberta, Canada back to his New Zealand homeland, to share the results of their investigation into attitudes, perceptions, opinions, issues, around the coastal environment and Ngunguru Sandspit. It may be that Damian has heard of our current summer bliss and decided that now is the time to come home! Robin will be travelling from Auckland to re-connect with our coastal community and share in the presentation of their report. For many years there have been debates over the status and potential development of Ngunguru Sandspit. Collins and Kearns have been particularly interested in the questions of access, use and management that accompanied Landco’s (now Todd Property Group) development proposal, as well as ongoing efforts to preserve the spit’s natural character and cultural values through potential conversion to a reserve or park. To investigate these issues, Damian and Robin interviewed people from a wide range of backgrounds (including interested locals, government spokespeople, and developer representatives), and looked at a wide range of background documents. They emphasize the local dimensions of the current struggle over the Ngunguru Sandspit, with a focus on five key ideas:

  1. People’s sense of attachment to the sandspit, which has motivated many local people to advocate its protection;
  2. The nature of the owner’s property rights, and thoughts on how these should be managed;
  3. The appeal of the potential ‘landswap’ between Landco (Todd Property Group) and DOC, and other ideas around transferring the sandspit from private to public ownership;
  4. Local perceptions of Landco’s November 2006 proposal for approximately 350 houses on the spit, and how this would involve the creation of a new suburb on the coast;
  5. The sense of community associated with participation in the planning process around the future of the sandspit.

An opportunity for questions and discussion will follow the presentation.

The Ngunguru Hall will also display art, photography, and information inspired by our environment. Come along to see the displays, hear the presentation, and talk to people involved in the on-going quest to protect the Ngunguru Sandspit and our unique coastal community and environment.

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