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Takapuna project wins ‘Green Star’ rating

Flagstaff Team

Blowing their trumpet… Events such as this have helped earn Panuku Green Star accreditation

Events at the council-owned space at 38 Hurstmere Rd, which aim to bring the community together, are among the initiatives that have earned Auckland Council’s development arm groundbreaking “green” certification for its Unlock Takapuna development project.

Panuku has been working towards the Green Star – Communities rating in Takapuna in conjunction with the New Zealand Green Building Council. Development manager Kate Cumberpatch says the rating is a first of its kind, recognising a community rather than an individual building.

“It looks at all the projects and whether the community will be sustainable for the future,” Cumberpatch says.

The plans had to meet more than 100 criteria to get the accreditation, she says.

These included liveability, walkability, fresh food, local employment, opportunities to get outside and relax, meet other people from the community and to exercise.

Some of the activities already held at 38 Hurstmere meet some of these needs – such as a bicycle cafe, workshops, concerts and tables for eating lunch.

Commercial buildings will be required to meet high environmental standards.

Landscape designers Isthmus are working on a concept design for the new public space, where the Anzac St car park and 38 Hurstmere are now.

There may be features such as a large chess set or basketball hoops to encourage outdoor activities.

The two large trees, an oak and a gum, will be retained in the design and new trees planted, Cumberpatch says.

The design team has found a way to slow traffic using the service lane that crosses the public space, so pedestrians take priority, rather than cars.

This article originally appeared in the 20 December of the Rangitoto Observer.