Restoring native forest in Western Springs
The pine trees in the forested area bordered by West View Road, Auckland Zoo, Western Springs Lakeside and the Stadium are beyond their life expectancy and in poor health. The storms in April felled some trees and left others with damaged limbs.
All the trees need to be removed because they pose a threat to the public.
Once they are removed, we will restore the area with native forest, dominated by kauri, pūriri, taraire and tānekaha.
We are currently applying for a resource consent for the project. The tracks will remain closed until we know the outcome of the resource consent application.
For more details on the project, see the Our Auckland article.
Effects on the current flora and fauna
The pine stand is home to various native and exotic bird and bat species, and the area will be inspected by an ecologist before the project starts.
The pine trees will be felled from the ground. Most of the wood will be removed or mulched, but some will be left behind to provide habitat for local fauna like kingfisher and ruru (morepork).
Removing the pines will not affect the stability of the slope, and the area will be monitored throughout the project.
Project timeframe and area access
Once underway, the project is estimated to take up to three months, with actual felling work taking around two months.
Once this is done, the replanting and ongoing maintenance of the new forest could take several years.
The area, including the tracks, will be closed to the public while the trees are removed.
Involving the community in the project
The Western Springs Native Bush Restoration Project was part of the 2015-2025 Long-term Plan, and had lots of support for its proposed environmental initiatives, particularly from mana whenua.
The regeneration project and track proposals will be confirmed with input from the local community, and we will look for opportunities to involve the community in the planting.
Notice of hearing - November 2018
Our application for a resource consent to remove the trees will be heard on 11-12 December 2018.
You will be able to attend this meeting, where the hearing commissioners will consider the submissions around the application.