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Cup plan to benefit Eden Park residents
By AROHA AWARAU - Central Leader

Officials are working on a master plan to ensure residents benefit from Eden Park hosting the 2011 Rugby World Cup.

Auckland City Council's planning and regulatory committee will tomorrow discuss a proposed 'precinct plan' addressing how the redeveloped stadium integrates with surrounding suburbs.

"It's a guide to what will happen in the area in terms of development," committee chairwoman Glenda Fryer says.

"Basically we're putting it on the agenda so the council can proceed ahead."

The report before tomorrow's committee is short on detail.

But it says attention shifted to the precinct plan because of the urgency surrounding the stadium upgrade for the 2011 Rugby World Cup.

The plan is non-statutory and does not cover the redevelopment of the ground.

It aims to serve as an overview of work needed in neighbouring areas, such as street upgrades and transport links.

The report says the short-term objective is to ensure the best possible environment is created in time for the world cup.

Targets include meeting needs of surrounding residents and businesses and improving public transport to events.

Ms Fryer says the area covered by the plan will include parts of Kingsland, Morningside, Mt Eden and Sandringham.

She says the plan can't be finalised until the final design and resource consent applications for the stadium revamp are confirmed.

That's expected to take at least another two months.

The plan has been sent to various groups for feedback.

They include the Eden Park Trust Board, the Eden Albert Community Board, the Eden Park Residents Association, the Eden Park Neighbours Association and mainstreet representatives from Kingsland and Eden Valley.

"The plan is to ensure that developers know the wishes of the council and the community," Ms Fryer says.

Eden Park Neighbours Association chairman Mark Donnelly says discussions are at an early stage and describes the latest talks as a 'plan to make a plan'.

"We want to make sure the objectives are right to start with," he says.

"The development of Eden Park will change how the area is used. The key driver is to recognise that the area has an historical character."

He says games at Eden Park will be infrequent, so the emphasis should be on the long-term benefits for residents.

"We want to see our footpaths upgraded regardless of the rugby world cup."

The council report says the precinct plan can be funded from existing budgets.