PARKS, POOL, AND LIBRARY

Mike wants to see the Botany subdivision have the same amenities as Howick and Pakuranga. One of the first projects Mike worked on was advocating for the installation of sports field lighting at Barry Curtis Park. Mike is currently advocating to bring forward​ the construction of the Aquatic Centre and Ormiston Library. He has worked to provide residents with regular Ormiston Town Centre updates. And Mike has advocated and achieved having a area-wide review of all Howick Local Board parks, so that those needing updates can be identified, repaired and updated.

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Getting the Lights on at Barry Curtis Park rugby fields

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By Mike Turinsky

Since becoming a local board member, I have engaged with community and found that truly, many people in our community often feel isolated and not heard. The Botany subdivision is extremely multi-cultural, I see that as a strength not a weakness. But if we are going to work together, we have to know each other. We need events that draw us out of our households and into the parks and other venues. We need our children to be able to play sports, even in the winter-time. We need places to hang out and meet each other.

In the last 15 years I have watched Botany go from paddocks to homes. But Botany to Flat Bush still lacks some basic amenities. As the newest part of the Howick Local Board, I want to see it thriving. I want to see families move into Botany and want to stay for a lifetime. But we have a lot of work to do, to make that happen.

During the two years I have been on the board, I have worked to make our area more liveable. One big area of concern has been for children safety.

For example, when I was elected, we had Barry Curtis Park sport fields 5 and 6 without any lights! This meant children would have to either not play sports after dark, or parents would have to line the fields with their cars to light the field. It wasn't a great solution, and although there were legacy plans for lights, we were still several years away from having them installed.

So I worked with the locals, with Marist Eastern Rugby Club to get temporary lights put on the rugby fields. This was done by partnering with a local business, Barfoot & Thompson Real Estate agent Munish Bhatt and branch manager Grant Sykes. Barfoot & Thompson provided the funding for temporary lights, and meanwhile I worked with with council facilities to move the date for permanent lights forward.

By July 2017, we had temporary lights up and running. And by May 2018, the permanent lights were installed, two years sooner than previously scheduled. That is what I mean by engaging community. It means finding a problem and creatively solving it together.

STATUS: PROJECT COMPLETED

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PO Box 39796

Howick, Auckland 2145

New Zealand

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