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Kitekite – is it the sacrificial track?

On 20 November Cllr Penny Hulse, chair of the Auckland Council Environment and Community Committee announced publicly that Kitekite Track will reopen before Christmas.  Many will have applauded that move, with the opportunity to get back into the forested part of the Waitakere Ranges and the boost to local businesses. But there is a downside  [ Read More ]

Piha Cafe granted extended hours

The Piha café has been granted extended hours enabling it to stay open till 10 pm. The permission was granted on a non-notified basis, meaning that there was no opportunity for anyone to submit. The decision not to notify and to grant the extended hours were made by Commissioner Leigh McGregor and her report can be read here  [ Read More ]

Our dynamic beach

Phil Vine in the Herald on coastal erosion and accretion at Awhitu, Piha and Muriwai. quotes Mischa and Steve Davis, Jim Dahm and others. http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=11195493

Protests against oil drilling in the Tasman Sea

Around a thousand gathered on Piha Beach on 23 November in the Banners on the Beach protest against deep sea oil drilling. When the crowd lined up facing out to the Tasman where the Greenpeace protest boat Vega was confronting Anadarko’s exploration ship Noble Bob Douglas, the line stretched from Pakiti Rock to Lion Rock  [ Read More ]

Plan Change 36 made operative

Plan Change 36 was proposed by Waitakere City Council to liberalise economic activities in the Waitakere Ranges Heritage Area. It came on the back of the fight over the Piha Café, which was a “non-complying” activity under the District Plan, which is the most discouraging activity status a proposal can face.  WCC wanted to make  [ Read More ]

Thoughts about Piha’s diminishing natural beauty

The New Zealand Herald on Saturday June 1 announced that CNN had listed neighbouring beach Karekare at number 38 in its Top 100 Best Beaches in the World on its summer travel website. http://www.nzherald.co.nz/lifestyle/news/article.cfm?c_id=6&objectid=10887739 Those assembling the list described Karekare as “a grandiose sweep of black sand [that] stretches before bush-clad hills”. It then went  [ Read More ]

Bowler takes law into own hands

The photo might be a bit cheesy, but this heart-warming story of the Piha Bowling Club ladies, and a few lads, stepping in to capture a boy in a Toyota doing wheelies in the Domain, will please a lot of us who get sick of seeing the turf being ripped up. http://www.stuff.co.nz/auckland/local-news/western-leader/8398705/Citizens-arrest-teen Of concern was the report  [ Read More ]

Our endangered dophins – Maui’s

While swimming out the back some years ago I was joined by some Maui’s dolphins. An unforgettable experience if a little scary at the time. They say they are small but a lot around a single swimmer got a bit lonely. Maui’s & Hector’s dolphins are the world’s smallest and rarest dolphins. Up until the  [ Read More ]

New dog bylaws for Piha

In the last few months the Auckland Council has been developing proposed new regional policies and bylaws on dogs. The Council has inherited seven sets of dog bylaws from the legacy councils, and policies from the Regional Council, and is trying to roll them into one more consistent set of rules to make it easier for the  [ Read More ]

Why a gravel path in the dunes?

Reactions are mixed about the plethora of white concrete paths materialising around Piha – a $750,000 legacy project funded in the dying days of Waitakere City Council. Even more contentious is the gravel path that has appeared on the beachfront, parallel to the road at Little Lion Rock corner.  There is even a dinky little  [ Read More ]

Piha property prices among the big dives

Piha property prices have fallen 10% from the last valuations according to an Auckland Council revaluation, one of the biggest falls of anywhere in the region. Piha shows the trend along with some other coastal areas, such as Muriwai (14.87%), Gulf Harbour (14.9%), Kawau Island (15.21%), Mahurangi (10.19%) and Great Barrier Island (14.25%). While this bodes well for  [ Read More ]

Cafe founder oversteps mark to support liquor licence

From Sunday Star-Times, nuff said. http://www.stuff.co.nz/business/industries/5602655/Red-faces-at-world-cup-events-firm

Cafe gains seven-days a week liquor licence

Piha Fine Foods Ltd (Piha Cafe) has been granted a liquor licence by Auckland Council to serve alcohol from 11am to 7 pm seven days of the week. This is the first outlet at Piha able to sell alcohol during the daytime and to the general public. This will surprise many in the Piha community  [ Read More ]

Piha Cafe withdraws application for RWC liquor licence

Piha Fine Foods Ltd (Piha Cafe) has withdrawn its application to seek a special Rugby World Cup liquor licence. There were several objections from Protect Piha Heritage Society and neighbours and a hearing was scheduled for 31 August. This was delayed to 6 September, the RWC Authority saying it was seeking further information from the applicant.  [ Read More ]

Notice from Auckland Transport on Footpath Project

Auckland Transport would like to advise that the construction work for footpaths in Piha is starting soon. Contract start date                          29 August 2011 Anticipated Completion date      30 November 2011 Contractor                                          Kirrane & Malone Contract Manager                           Paul Vieviorka Contact Phone Nos                         (09) 818 3360 or 027 934 876 Engineer’s Rep                                  Sam Jackman  [ Read More ]

Piha Cafe applies for fast-track liquor licence

The Piha Cafe has applied for a liquor licence using the fast-track method put in place for the Rugby World Cup. This allows a very short time for submissions (by 5 pm 15 August) and only those with “an interest greater than the general public may object”. Currently, the cafe has a recently gained resource  [ Read More ]

Auckland Council responds about dune works

Dear Stakeholders,  Due to the number of emails received on this project a single response has been generated to address questions raised with the Marine Parade South dune and walkway maintenance.  The below is for your information only and no response is required, however if you have questions please feel free to contact me on  [ Read More ]

Troubled Piha cafe passes into new hands

Wayne Thompson of the Herald on the sale of the operation of the Piha cafe from Preserve Piha Ltd to new proprietors. http://www.nzherald.co.nz/piha20cafe/search/results.cfm?kw1=piha%20cafe&kw2=&st=gsa

Consents granted to Preserve Piha Ltd for Cafe

Commissioner Les Simmons has granted a non-notified consent to Preserve Piha Ltd to allow work on the Piha Cafe involving building additions, carpark resurfacing, and consumption of alcohol. These were granted for a number of reasons including that the consents would not materially increase or noticeably alter the scale or nature of the activity, increase  [ Read More ]

Roadside trees in Piha in need of protection

Some roadside Pohutukawa trees in Garden Road took a battering recently when a truck moving building materials smashed its way through. Concerned residents who complained to the Auckland Council were told by Helen Biffen of Parks: “Local authorities are required to provide an open envelope within the road corridor which reaches 4.25m high and 300mm from the  [ Read More ]

Rules for groups of trees in urban areas OK says Judge Jackson.

Judge Jackson in the Environment Court has supported general tree rules for areas of trees or groups of trees in urban areas such as those at Titirangi and the pohutukawa lined cliffs of North Shore. The former N Shore City Council, Waitakere City Council and Auckland Regional Council had sought a declaratory judgement as to  [ Read More ]

Council says consent application for alcohol at cafe will not be notified

Auckland Council Independent Commissioner Les Simmons has decided that the application br Preserve Piha Ltd (Piha Cafe) to serve alcohol at the cafe will not be notified. This means that he alone will make the decision, without hearing from members of the Piha community. The Piha Cafe had sought to changes conditions of its consent to include  [ Read More ]

Piha Cafe seeks changes to serve alcohol, change building and operate icecream cart

On the Open Agenda of the Auckland Council Hearings Committee, Wednesday 6 April, starting 9.30 am. Item 14: Appointment of Commissioner – Resource Consent Preserve Piha Ltd. The Piha Cafe has lodged an application to vary the conditions of its resource consent to operate a cafe at 20 Seaview Road. The proposed changes relate to:  [ Read More ]

Thundercats are gone

We are told by Barbara Cade, events manager for Waitakere in the Auckland Council, that this year’s Thundercats will be the last. You will recall many protests about the first time this event was held at North Piha. In that light here’s a message from the organisers. Good morning all Just a courtesy email to advise that  [ Read More ]

Piha R&R AGM

The Piha Ratepayers and Residents AGM elected a new committee consisting of: President Graham Webber Vice-President Ken Cowan Secretary Monique Olivier Committee Dale Kaiser, Helen Pearce, Graham Caley, Jan O’Connor, Alberto Bonini In Matters Arising, there was discussion of the fireowrk problem, and I put a motion that was passed unanimously, ‘That the Piha R&R  [ Read More ]

Fireworks pests cause midnight callout

Fireworks were being let off all over Piha from an early hour on New Year’s Eve and it was not surprising that bang on midnight the fire siren went repeatedly and the volunteer crew was off to fight a fire in gorse opposite the look-out on Piha Hill. Fortunately the fire was accessible for the  [ Read More ]

Risking fire at Piha

Late on Friday 10 December a large group lit a fire on the southern end of the beach. Burning anything that came to hand, the group drank alcohol and stood about doing nothing much in particular. With the fire risk at exteme, open fires are banned at Piha. A few flying embers could well have  [ Read More ]

Milk Track works

A highly intrusive bright white concrete drain has appeared alongside the Milk Track and the track has been covered for its entire width with a hardened surface. This is just the latest in the urban-style infrastructure that is appearing all over Piha, with apparently no regard to the natural beauty of Piha and the requirement to  [ Read More ]

Piha’s surf break

Piha’s world famous surf break didn’t make it into the New Zealand Coastal Policy Statement 2010 Surf Breaks of National Significance despite representations from a number of submitters including Protect Piha Heritage Society. This is the first time that surf breaks have been included in the national coastal policy and 17 surf  breaks  are included so  [ Read More ]

Trees for schedule

The Government’s removal of the ability of local government bodies to set general tree protection rules led to a request by Waitakere City Council for nominations for trees for protection. Although the Government’s policy did not apply to trees in rural areas, local group Protect Piha Heritage took advantage of the situation to put forward  [ Read More ]