Communication message from Auckland Council regarding the Te Puru gate closure to the access way in front of the building:

Access to Te Puru Park is via a service road – this is an important distinction to make as it is not a user car access road. There is a designated car parking area for all users of the park before the service road.

Auckland Council is responsible for gated access at the service road to Te Puru Park, and as part of this we are responsible for the effective management of any health and safety risks associated with the service road.

We are aware of one recent incident and another in 2012 at the service road site, where a small child was hit by a car. There have also been several near-misses at this site. This is exacerbated by cars parking on the service lane, which pose a significant danger to children and their parents/caregivers. In a real emergency, user groups such as emergency services have keys to the gate, and a key is always kept on-site at the sports centre.

For the safety of all users of the service road, the decision has now been made to lock the gate 24/7. At this time, access is still available to user groups, to allow for such activities as deliveries, as the council is now providing keys to them.

As a service lane, the road is not meant to take large volumes of traffic. In the last two years, the council has spent approximately $10,000 maintaining this road, which has included repairing pot-holes and re-grading. Following investigation by the council, we do not believe there are any further mitigation measures we can take to reduce speed-related incidents. We have serious concerns for pedestrians and would be failing to provide a duty of care if we did not take the action we have taken. 

We have now met with The Trust and User groups with regard to the closure decision.

The Franklin Local Board will now engage with the Trust to discuss their plans following the publication of their feasibility study to look at possibilities for the development of car parking and access to the site.