Search Results for: claudelands

Opoia, Jesmond Park, Claudelands Bridge, Sonning Park

For Sonning Park idea see end of post.

The Opoia section of the River plan project notes: ‘There was a flat area of land in front of and below the Opoia Pa which was a common meeting place for war parties before they went into battle. This land and the Pa itself were destroyed by the construction of the Claudelands Road and Railway Bridge. The Pa is now buried beneath the car park at Sonning Esplanade Car park’ (page 52 this link) and it plans to ‘Provide an improved connection to Claudelands Bridge to complete a river’s edge walking and cycleway circuit’. The proposal to providing a connecting accessible path through Jesmond Park is not a topography issue. It is more about whether it respects the descendants of the people who lived here before the 1860s invasion and confiscation. The answer to this will come from the partnership that ex-mayor King and current Mayor Southgate have begun building between the people and their strong relationship with the land.

Jesmond Park has three significant trees listed in HCC district plan schedule 9D: 2 London planes and a red oak. My proposal is for the path to be on the bridge side of the two London plane trees

Could Opoia link to Sonning Park? The image below from the Proposed District Plan Volume 2 – (p120) shows a continuous pedestrian promenade between the two bridges. The desire line shown could be extended north under Claudelands Bridge, linking into Sonning Park.

Again from the Proposed District Plan Volume 2 (p114) – the indicative concept has a path shown connecting Sonning Park to a river jetty. The distance between the northern end of the promenade shown above and the Sonning park jetty path is about 40 metres.

The option of going under the bridges is longer, but it allows an easy grade path, as Sonning Park is wide and the area between the existing car parking and the river’s edge is deep. The question the ‘River plan’ asks is: does improving access through Jesmond Park (1) cater for the people who live in and visit Hamilton; (2) enable development that will promote enjoyment of the river and benefit the community; (3) support Te Ture Whaimana O Te Awa o Waikato; and (4) promote the celebration of culture, sport, recreation and leisure? See page 1 of the Hamilton River Plan.

Category: News

Opoia, Jesmond Park to Claudelands Bridge

Hamilton’s River Plan Objective is ‘For Opoia to be developed as a medium-density residential area (by the private sector) with the provision for public access and a strong connection to the river and central city.’

In 2008 the ‘Hamilton City Heart Revitalisation Project’ explained (7.10 & 7.11) Opoia is ‘within the walk-able catchment of the CBD’ and ‘Currently this area has less than ideal access … constraint to redevelopment is access … doing nothing will not result in land use changes’ and ‘a pedestrian link encompassing a river reserve would be a fundamental requirement for redevelopment of this area’.
Key findings (p95) included – ‘limited by poor connectivity to Claudelands Road, topography issues preventing connections through Opoia. Subsequently development is expected to occur relativity slowly given access difficulties’ (more information in staff comments at end of post). Looking at the quote about topography issues to Claudelands road, below is a check of access difficulties. I have found it possible to provide an accessible path through Jesmond Park between Opoia road and Claudelands road. Topography issues are not the reason Opoia has poor connectivity.

In the Hamilton City Centre Local Area Plan: Oct 2012 – (p6) ‘Opoia has been included because of its close proximity to the central city’. (p15) ‘Improved connections can be achieved through extended street-scaping and pedestrian amenity – with green fingers extending out from the central city’. (p28) ‘Medium density residential development (up to 5 storeys) will be promoted in Opoia, due to the areas close proximity to the central city, views of the Waikato River, and sunny aspect. Current access difficulties into this area will need to be addressed in order to ensure increased residential densities in this area’. (p34) ‘There are currently three pedestrian entry points in to Opoia Precinct, via Riro Road, from Soldiers Memorial Park through Parana Reserve, or from Claudelands Bridge, through Jesmond Park to Opoia Road. Activate Jesmond Park through increased residential density and appropriate edging to enliven this central city park and increase safety / usability of the pedestrian connection between Opoia and the Claudelands Bridge.’

The 2012 idea ‘with green fingers extending out from the central city’ fits so well with ‘Hamilton city council climate change’ commitment: ‘we’re encouraging people to move around our city using active transport’.

Hamilton City Heart Revitalisation Project: May 2008 – staff comments.

Category: News