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Media Statement following NZ Herald Article
I know the media is always out for some "juicy" story, but I am increasingly frustrated that the media take the opinion that Mark Donnellyís opinions are indicative of the neighbours of Eden Park. They simply are not.

There are equal, if not more neighbours happy with the progress thatís going on. We do not need whinging neighbours giving us all a bad name. Mark Donnelly complains to Eden Park Trust Board when graffiti around the construction site is a problem. Our neighbourhood group by comparison talks with the community safety team at Balmoral Police Station and get them to extend their patrol. Itís called communities working together, not against each other. Itís ironic that as a Councillor Mark Donnelly actually criticises the council he is part of.

Working together with the Eden Park Redevelopment Board is of vital importance to ensure that we as neighbours can be part of the development. We are not arrogant enough to believe that we can effect change, as the show must go on, but strongly believe that I we work closely with them, they will be more sympathetic to our situation. This recent declaration of the whole process being a sham actually harms relationships within the neighbourhood. We have found them to be most helpful and providing issues are passed thru the correct forum they are answered and addressed quite promptly.
The Eden Park Redevelopment Board spends considerable time and efforts having community meetings and itís disappointing, to say the least, that Mark Donnellyís comments (which were not wholly accurate) were not raised at these forums prior to making such statements. The Eden Park Redevelopment Board have a clear ďno surprisesĒ approach to media issues concerning residents and involve the neighbourhood associations before making media statements, so itís a shame that the EPNA feel themselves above this process.

I would respectfully ask that when quoting neighbourhood opinion you seek a balanced view of neighbours. The EPNA does not represent the neighbourhood as a whole, as many of us want to see the project well underway and we look forward to a successful RWC2011.

I would also personally like to assure you, we are not acting on behalf of the Eden Park Trust Board or Auckland Rugby/Cricket, we are merely individuals who regard living next door to Eden Park as an asset rather than a curse (otherwise why would we have moved there?). We are not swayed by offers of free tickets, as the majority including myself have family season tickets, so we pay our own way, but I do know that as a neighbourhood gesture, they are greatly appreciated by residents. I'm assured that such gestures are always extended to both associations.

Regards
Jose Luis Fowler
Eden Park Residents Association
021 369537