Cabbage tree ribbon ceremony blends old with new
With green space at a premium in rapidly intensifying Auckland, a Kingsland business group has come up with a great way to open up areas that weren’t previously being used by the public.
Kingsland Business Society has spearheaded a public private partnership with local business Alsco NZ to fund the redevelopment of previously unused land on the street front of their New North Road building.
Included in the transformation into a public shared space is a huge mural of Putangitangi ducks by internationally acclaimed artists Janine and Charles Williams, along with landscaped gardens and seating.
A ribbon made from woven cabbage tree leaves was cut to open the new pocket park on 19th November. The cabbage tree theme was chosen as the nearby area where Eden Park is now sited was originally called Cabbage Tree Swamp.
The ribbon was made from cabbage trees growing in Kingsland and is being woven by sisters Ann Strickland and Donna Campbell, flax weavers who have strong connections with local iwi.
"It's really exciting to see business come on board with offering and paying for their unused space to be transformed for the whole community” says Christine Foley, Kingsland Business Society manager.
“We had a huge amount of interest in the urban design competition for the space last year and now everyone is keen to see the final result" she said. "This is about creating a habitable future here and we would love to see other businesses get on board with this type of project.”
Once the pocket park is fully complete the business association hopes to have free WiFi installed so that local workers can use the space in their lunch break and use their smart phones at the same time.