Wharetana Bay residents seeking input over retrospective consent
Retrospective consent is being sought to cover additional building size at the site of the contentious visitor accommodation within Wharetana Bay’s 40-metre coastal yard.
The additional consent, currently being processed by the Auckland Council, means that the bay’s other residents may have a chance to oppose the development in the light of deviations from the agreed size of the structure.
A retrospective consent for the cabana building at the rear of the site, applied for on Monday this week, would authorise the increased length of the building from 5.5 metres to the constructed length of 7.1metres. Overall height would not change.
Local resident Carl Dalton has been campaigning against the project since construction began. The lack of communication with neighbours, he says, goes against the spirit of the way things are done on Waiheke.
“It’s not about the individual, Waiheke is more community-focused but the council seems to favour the individual over the community and you have to ask the question ‘why’?”
He says knowing that the project will require retrospective consent means they can campaign to have this consent process notified, which might give neighbours input into the decision they did not have the first time around.
“From the very start we’ve been campaigning to have this resource consent notified and we’ve always been a bit behind the eight-ball. Normally all this stuff is under the radar and nobody knows about it because nobody’s privy to the process, but now we are.”
To get the consent process notified, he is asking members of the public, particularly those who attended the public meeting in Ostend about it, to write to and email Mark White, the council’s manager for resource consenting and compliance, with reasons why the process should be notified.
Mr White told Gulf News that while there was no formal process for public involvement in the decision of whether to notify a consent application, people could write or email the council with their views.
“Council is well aware of the public interest in the development of the site. As a result of this, council will arrange to have an independent commissioner make the decision on notification.”
Mr Dalton says, “I don’t know if it’s good news or not, I don’t know if they can ignore letters or not. It means the public might be able to have more of a say in having contentious developments like this notified.”