Trees have a unique place in our environment. Without them, human life as we know it would not exist. Trees conserve water, make our air breathable, absorb air pollution, support our slopes and form the hub of enormous underground micro-environments that strengthen soil and foster insect life.

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Council Backs Down on Blockhouse Bay Monterey Pine Trees

Council Backs Down on Blockhouse Bay Monterey Pine Trees

The Tree Council and the Whau Local Board are delighted to report that 9 of the 11 Monterey Pines of Gittos Domain in the centre of Blockhouse Bay will be retained. These historic trees are of iconic value to the community and  are living reminders of the rapidly disappearing heritage of this part of West… More

Tree Week is Coming!

Tree Week is Coming!

As a way of achieving a better understanding of the role and value of trees in the urban environment The Tree Council is proud to announce New Zealand Tree Week will be held from 4 to 11 October 2015. “Following the changes to the Resource Management Act over the past four years and the unknown… More

Category Archives: Latest News

Council Backs Down on Blockhouse Bay Monterey Pine Trees

Council Backs Down on Blockhouse Bay Monterey Pine Trees

The Tree Council and the Whau Local Board are delighted to report that 9 of the 11 Monterey Pines of Gittos Domain in the centre of Blockhouse Bay will be retained.

These historic trees are of iconic value to the community and  are living reminders of the rapidly disappearing heritage of this part of West Auckland. Their significance was recognised when they were listed on the Schedule of Notable Trees in the District Plan of Auckland for their visual amenity.  

Scheduled trees are afforded the highest protection through a lengthy and deliberate process. The general expectation is therefore that any consent application relating to these trees will be publicly notified, so that affected communities get the opportunity to take part in decisions over their future.

This was not the case for the people of Blockhouse Bay. Auckland Council recommended non-notification of the consent application for removal, which meant the public were excluded from engaging with the decision making process, denied the opportunity to influence the management of their own historic heritage and left ignorant of both the process and the final decision.

Through the efforts of a local resident and the Whau Local Board, which had always recommended public notification, questions were raised. The resulting level of public concern and scrutiny halted the process of tree removal.

The resulting pause in the process allowed for a more balanced consideration of all the management options. Council resolutely defended their original decision and various statements were published in local media. However it became clear that professional assessments of the trees did not support the wholesale destruction of all eleven trees, and the consent to remove them has now been withdrawn.

The Tree Council’s spokesperson Suzanne Caron said “The example of the Blockhouse Bay Monterey Pines demonstrates why planning decisions affecting the notable trees in our communities should be open to public scrutiny. It is clear that the best way to avoid unjustifiable and hasty decisions is to ensure that the process of public notification is followed in all scheduled tree resource consent applications.”

“Auckland Council cannot serve the interests of Auckland residents by claiming that recent legislative changes granting increased powers to consenting authorities afford them the right to act at their discretion. Just like other high profile examples of non-notification of resource consents this case proves that this approach risks community alienation and the loss of our valuable heritage trees.”

 

 

Tree Week is Coming!

Tree Week is Coming!

As a way of achieving a better understanding of the role and value of trees in the urban environment The Tree Council is proud to announce New Zealand Tree Week will be held from 4 to 11 October 2015. “Following the changes to the Resource Management Act over the past four years and the unknown… Continue Reading

Karekare Pohutukawa Saved!

Karekare Pohutukawa Saved!

Great news in the Waitakere Ranges Local Board agenda that Auckland Transport have stepped back from the removal of the Karekare Pohutukawa and are investigating the design of a prop. So for now at least the tree is safe. But an even more important outcome of this campaign has been the admission by Auckland Transport… Continue Reading

Karekare’s Ancient Pohutukawa under Threat

The ancient pohutukawa arching over the Karekare Road is under threat from Auckland Transport who want to remove it order to comply with their blanket rule of 4.5m height clearance.  After being tipped off about the threat The Tree Council’s Mels Barton made a presentation at the Waitakere Ranges Local Board meeting and the Board… Continue Reading

The Truth About Tree Protection Draws Large Crowd

Open letter to: His Worship The Mayor Len Brown and Auckland Councillors; Waitakere Ranges, Whau and Henderson Massey Local Boards; West Auckland MPs Hon David Cunliffe, Hon Phil Twyford, Hon Carmel Sepuloni, Rt Hon John Key, Hon Paula Bennett; Minister for Conservation Hon Maggie Barrie and Minister for Environment Hon Dr Nick Smith. On Thursday… Continue Reading

Pohutukawa 6 at St Luke’s Saved!

The campaign to save the 6 pohutukawas over 80 years old on Great North Rd at the St Luke’s Junction took a surprising and wonderful turn on 20 Feb 2015 when the Auckland Transport Board voted unanimously to save the trees. The protesters had turned up in force for the Board meeting, ironically held in… Continue Reading

Pohutukawa 6 campaign gathers pace

Pohutukawa 6 campaign gathers pace

The campaign to save the 6 pohutukawas over 80 years old at the St Luke’s junction on Great North Road is gathering pace. Auckland Transport has accepted the recommendation of the hearing commissioners to remove the trees and a legal appeal is planned. The trees have been decorated with a lot of banners and knitting… Continue Reading

Save 6 pohutukawas at St Luke’s on Great North Rd

Proposals to widen the current St Luke’s motorway junction from Great North Road threaten to remove 6 mature pohutukawa trees from the roadside opposite Western Springs Park. The resource consent application has been publicly notified and submissions can be made until 4 July. To make it easy for people to make a submission The Tree… Continue Reading

Rosebank Road trees embraced by childcare centre

The large oak and pohutukawa trees at Jomac Place on Rosebank Road, Avondale are finally safe thanks to the persistency of The Tree Council in pursuing their protection. The development site has been bought by Dr Darius Singh and his wife Nikeeta who are proposing a ‘Chrysalis’ childcare centre to surround the trees. The Tree Council… Continue Reading

Candidate responses – Council elections 2013

The Tree Council suggests you ask candidates standing for council positions in your area if they support general tree protection before deciding who to vote for. These are the responses we have received: Christine Rose Waitakere Ward Council candidate – I’d like it on the record that I support General Tree Protection, plus specified scheduling… Continue Reading


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