31 Aug 2013

New reclamation in Auckland blocked pending study

9:38 am on 31 August 2013

Auckland Council is blocking any new reclamation by Ports of Auckland until a new study is done on the its future.

The decision temporarily freezes debate for a year, on what Mayor Len Brown calls one of the most contentious issues in the council's first term.

There has been considerable public opposition to Ports of Auckland's longer term plan to extend Bledisloe Wharf into the Waitemata Harbour.

Mr Brown said as the owner of the port company it is important that the council signal a strategic direction.

He said he doesn't accept that the move has any commercial impact on the company.

He hopes a wide-ranging study on the future of the downtown port could be completed in about a year, after which the question of further reclamation could be revisited.

Councillor Christine Fletcher called the move a political stunt and refused a request by the meeting chair to withdraw the remark.

The decision does not affect an existing reclamation underway at the Fergusson terminal.

The port company is not commenting.