War Memorial Park

May 13, 2009 at 9:17 am | Posted in Memorial Park / Buckle St | 2 Comments

MCM representatives met with the Hon Chris Finlayson, Minister for Arts, Culture and Heritage about the War Memorial Park project on 15 April. We discussed MCM’s concerns and listened to the Minister’s views.

  •  The Minister is keen for the community and the Mt Cook School to be involved in the planning for the park
  • He is also very comfortable with the notion of having some community facilities incorporated in the park’s overall design e.g. seating and a playground for children.
  • He considers that there should be no shifting of the bypass roadway closer to the Mt Cook School. The Minister feels that the noise level of a roadway right next to school buildings will be disruptive
  • The Minister is proposing to create a new advisory group to reconsider all of the plans for the park and to advise the Minister on a way forward. This will involve a review of all previous work. There will likely be a representative from Mt Cook Mobilised on this group. The Minister has written to the Prime Minister seeking his approval for the advisory group to be established.
  • There will in any case be a delay while the Basin Reserve flyover is being considered as that will have an impact on the proposed park. In the interim until plans for the Park are finalised, the Ministry of Culture and Heritage is making plans for an upgrade and landscaping of the area of demolished buildings opposite the War Memorial site. Plans for this were viewed and discussed at the MCM meeting on Sunday 10 May.

Add your comments and suggestions by clicking on “Comments” above.

Update: Mt Cook Mobilised notices and activities

March 5, 2009 at 9:26 pm | Posted in Events, Parking Review, Updates | 1 Comment
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Kia ora, greetings from Mt Cook Mobilised

Here is an update for you. Carol sent this out by email to local people on the Mt Cook Mobilised mailing list on the 27th of Feb and I (Geoff) have been slack in putting it up here.  Consequently some things have passed – my apologies. Further interesting notices are invited; please send to mtcookmobilised@gmail.com, and you can also make comment on this blog.


The City Council has invited Mt Cook Mobilised to give feedback on the pre-1930 heritage protection provision recently applied to our suburb. Peter Cooke will be attending the seminar on this topic on 2 March, and in the meantime he welcomes any pointers from residents about the new rules – are they working or not? Have these provisions raised unnecessary obstacles in dealing with the council? Are they too strict or too lenient? Contact Peter Cooke via email.


Despite the article in the paper a week ago saying the Council had decided not to discontinue the green recycling bins, we understand no decision has been made yet. There’s an e-petition on the council’s website to save the green recycling bins. You don’t want to have to pay to recycle do you??? The website has some background information – with the new system it will be cheaper to throw away than to recycle! Please take the time to have a look.


We are collating feedback on parking as input to the review of the Residents and Coupon Parking schemes which Council is undertaking. Please register your good news and bad news on parking at on this blog – using comments (or email).


One park user has noticed that someone tried to set fire to the sports changing-room at lower Prince of Wales park. This would have been towards the end of last week or last weekend, and was around the back on the stream side on the left side of the wooden porch/doorway area. Did anyone see anything? In addition to this, a blue tarpaulin makeshift “tent” has appeared in the bushes on the east side of the upper Prince of Wales park behind the wire netting fence where the thick trees obscure it from view from the park. This “tent” seems to be a drinking/card playing retreat, rather than being used to sleep in.

MT VICTORIA INNER CITY FESTIVAL Saturday 28 February: 10:00am to 3pm

The Mt Cook Mobilised stall will be in Caroline St. This is festival celebrates sustainability, and we will feature a display about Papawai Reserve planting and the koura and banded kokopu.

NEWTOWN STREET FAIR AND FESTIVAL Sunday 8 March, 10:00 – 3:00

The Mt Cook Mobilised stall will be in the Newtown School grounds. Our site is near the Riddiford St entrance. See you there.

NEWSLETTER PLANNING MEETING Wednesday 11 March 7:30, venue tba

Do you have a topic that we should explore in the Mt Cook Mobilised newsletter? Are you a budding contributor? To send in ideas or to get involved, please email us.

PAPAWAI RESERVE WORK SESSION Sunday 15 March: 10am to 12 noon

Please note, due to the Newtown Festival, the working bee is on the 3rd Sunday this month. We will revert to the 2nd Sunday of the month in April.

MT COOK MOBILISED NEXT MEETING Sunday 29 March: 4:00pm, venue tba

Please note the date, further details to follow.

Warm regards, Carol Comber on behalf of Mt Cook Mobilised

Parking Review 2009

February 4, 2009 at 10:20 am | Posted in Parking Review | 14 Comments

WCC are reviewing the Residents Parking and Coupon Parking schemes in inner city suburbs, including Mt Cook.  

According to Wellington City Council, Mt Cook has 1248 households with an average of one car per household.  There are 644 off-street parks, leaving 604 car owners to park in the 938 Residents or Coupon parks.  

In Mt Cook there are 726 residents or coupon excemption permits currently issued.

On the face of it, all this seems fine.  Are you having trouble parking in your street? Add your comments and suggestions by clicking on “Comments” above.

July 08 Newsletter from Mt Cook Mobilised

August 6, 2008 at 8:12 am | Posted in Newsletters | Leave a comment

You can download a PDF version of this newsletter by clicking here

Why Mobe?

Mt Cook Mobilised was formed in July 2007 to give the suburb a voice. It exists to resist any inappropriate development and represent the interests of all residents.

We formed in the face of the development of the BGI/YMCA site and Memorial Park. After the public meeting 1428 signatures were gathered on a petition (mostly by Jacky Haydn). The petition was presented to Council on 19 December to keep the development within character and in scale. We make submissions to WCC on issues such as its Suburban Centres review, Adelaide Road proposal, and seeking another level crossing on Wallace St’s summit. We supported the NZHPT proposal to register the prison-brick wall on Tasman St as a historic place. We work closely with Newtown Residents Assn (NRA). We meet once a month in various venues, keep a website and issue news by email.

For further information email us
mtcookmobilised@ gmail.com
Peter Cooke, Mt Cook Mobilise

Continue Reading July 08 Newsletter from Mt Cook Mobilised…

Retain heritage, resolve traffic, involve locals and think creatively about urban development

September 16, 2007 at 10:58 am | Posted in Events | Leave a comment

These are some of the main themes expressed at a meeting of residents and friends of Mt Cook, held on the 21st of August at the YMCA stadium in Tasman Street.

The Meeting was warmed up by speakers who talked about a range of topics including: the proposal to develop a supermarket on the Tasman/Rugby Street site where the Boys and Girls Institute is located; the history of Mt Cook; the proposal for a Memorial Park and moving Buckle Street; the response of Mt Cook School to the plan to move Buckle Street – Sate Highway 1; the WCC’s plans for the area surrounding Adelaide Rd, and; the uncertain future of TSW Swim School currently using the BGI pool.

Following the speakers about 75 of the over 200 people attending the meeting stayed to participate in “break-out” groups to discuss the following questions:
1. What do we like about Mt Cook?
2. What are some great possibilities for Mt Cook?
3. What concerns us in Mt Cook?
4. What are the best options to deal with concerns?

The charts are used here to show how often particular themes came up in discussions

1. What do we like about Mt Cook?

The things that people liked were the character and history of places and buildings in Mt Cook. They liked the mix of people/cultures living in the area and the variety of people on the streets, the diverse amenities and “community facilities” – the parks, pool, gym, educational institutions, and combination of small retail and commercial services. Participants also appreciated the health and safety benefits associated with using local parks and being able to walk to town and the green belt. Ready access to public transport, and the trolleys in particular, was also valued.

Chart 1. Mt Cook “likes”

Mt Cook likes

Chart 2. Mt Cook – the “other” category of likes


2. What are some great possibilities for Mt Cook?

The things that people liked about Mt Cook are also the things they want to focus on looking forward. They want to retain, and gain recognition for, the historic character of Mt Cook and therefore to control or influence the development of the area. Participants wanted a Memorial Park “done right”, and believed community facilities should be retained and further developed (e.g. create a recognisable community centre, a “supermarket and recreation combined”) more trees, play areas and a community garden. They also wanted improved traffic flow and management, and improved safety for pedestrians.

Chart 3. Mt Cook – great possibilities (the blue line)


Finally local people wanted greater influence in local matters and thought the formation of a residents association, and mobilising residents more generally, might help Mt Cook gain greater recognition as a suburb. The visioning exercise planned by WCC for Adelaide Rd and surrounds provides us with an opportunity – to “maintain and improve destination Mt Cook”.

Chart 4. Mt Cook – the “other” category of great possibilities (the blue line)


3. What concerns us in Mt Cook?

The major concerns by a long way revolve around the following three themes.
1. The loss of historic buildings and a sense of heritage as a consequence of 2.
2. Intensive housing development. People are particularly concerned about “junky apartments” and/or “low quality development (hostel style housing)”
3. Traffic management and volumes – congestion and parking problems

Other concerns are also linked to these big three. With the increasing traffic volumes in Mt Cook comes significant health and safety concerns related to air pollution and pedestrian safety. With increasing numbers of people and housing in Mt Cook comes the threatened loss of community facilities (pool, stadium/gymnasium) in favour of a potentially inappropriate supermarket. All of these problems are expected to impact on the culture of Mt Cook – the social environment.

Chart 5. Mt Cook concerns (the red line)

Mt Cook concerns, relative to likes & possibilities

The lack of a recognizable community centre and not having a local residents association are seen as contributing to all these concerns. Participants indicated that Mt. Cook is not recognised as a distinctive place or “destination” in its own right and that “there is a lack of unified voice and consultation” about many things that happen in the neighbourhood.

Chart 6. Mt Cook – the “other” category of concerns (the red line)

Mt Cook - other concerns relative to likes & possilibilities

4. What are the best options to deal with concerns?

A sampling of “best options” for dealing with concerns are:

  • Form a residents association – develop a vision, charter and/or manifesto for Mt Cook’s future development
  • Input into/develop a traffic plan
  • Engage with WCC and Massey University (and other larger developers)
  • Generally increase opportunities for public consultation and public involvement in local decision-making
  • Keeping Buckle Street as it is and use a trench or tunnel/bridge when developing Memorial Park
  • Moving Mt Cook School to the BGI site and developing a supermarket on the school site
  • Encourage walking and promote more and different kinds of pedestrian crossings, including using bridges and tunnels
  • Propose limiting parking for the supermarket and encouraging a Metro-style development
  • [Continue] to record and map Mt Cook’s history – its features and personalities

For more detail on the meeting – the speakers presentations and notes, and for the access to the worksheet summaries from the break-out groups click here.


There is a follow-up meeting on Sunday 16 September for those interested in organising to address concerns by making those “best options” and “great possibilities” a reality. The meeting is at 40 Wallace Street Mt Cook at 4pm. Any problems getting there or apologies – just give me a call, Geoff 021 204-3678 or click on my name below to email.

Posted by Geoff

1 Ranfurly Terrace – support its heritage listing

September 12, 2007 at 7:10 am | Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Annette Baier reminds us that submissions to the W.C.C. in support of making Miss Rene Emenys house at 1 Ranfurly Terrace a heritage building close by 17 SEPTEMBER 2007- see District Plan Change 58: Public Notice and Proposed District Plan Change 58. The contact at the council is Sarah Nelson, ph 801 4235.

Annette also tells us that all the tiling in the pool at the Boys Institute was done by Rene’s father Charles Emeny. She was informed years ago by the then organiser of the Institute that it was probably the best pool in the Wellington area and in all only 3 tiles had ever fallen off. Thanks for that Annette.

Posted by Geoff

Following on from public meeting on 21 August

September 3, 2007 at 5:20 am | Posted in Events | 2 Comments


My apologies for the delay in describing the public meeting held on 21 August – other commitment and computer problems have got in the way. A summary of the meeting and its outcomes will be posted by Wednesday 12 September.

In the meantime here are two charts that indicate which themes the meeting participants felt strongly about. More detailed explanation coming up. Click on the thumbnail images to view.

Mt Cook - what we like, are concerned about and hope for, 21 Aug 07

Mt Cook - other themes, 21 Aug 07

The presentations and some video from the meeting will also be added when computer problems are resolved – within the next week or two.

Follow up meeting proposed for 16 September: 4pm at 40 Wallace St.
A further meeting of Mt Cook locals and “friends” is proposed for Sunday, 16 of September, to establish a formal residents group or some regular process for Mt Cook people to have their say. The time of the meeting is 4pm and the venue: 40 Wallace Street, Mt Cook. If you haven’t received information about this meeting that means for some reason you are not on our mailing list. To “sign up” email: mtcookmobilised@gmail.com

Relevant upcoming events
In the meantime, I refer you to an thoughtful post on WellurbanMt Cook Summit, which, among other things, talks about the lack of a coherent sense of Mt Cook, and suggests some ways in which the neighbourhood might develop a more recognisable centre and identity. Also check out A Big Competition leading up to IntensCity Week. These events respectively assess movements, associated infrastructure and urban environment between Wellington Airport and City, and review and propose ideas for the city’s physical future through to 2040. Both provide a vital opportunity to promote the “characterful” development of Mt Cook, as the Basin Reserve, Adelaide Rd, State Highway 1/Buckle Street and Memorial Park will be featured in the deliberations.

Posted by Geoff

Public Meeting – Mt Cook: our Burb’s future in your hands

August 10, 2007 at 8:40 am | Posted in Events | 5 Comments

Mt Cook public meeting poster - 500w.jpg

See previous post for further meeting details.

You can look at, and order a T-shirt here

Keep Buckle St where it is say Memorial Park Competition entrants

August 10, 2007 at 7:07 am | Posted in Memorial Park / Buckle St | 1 Comment

Memorial Park competition entrants all favoured leaving Buckle street in its present location, according to the Wellurban blog entry It’s a competitive world. I don’t know to what extent being briefed on the air quality and pedestrian safety concerns of local residents influenced design entries, but all opted for trenching Buckle St., or putting a bridge over it, and leaving it where it is.

Posted by Geoff

Developments in Mt Cook – Invitation to a public meeting

August 2, 2007 at 8:54 am | Posted in Events | 2 Comments

A group of Mt Cook residents are hosting a public meeting on Tuesday 21 August between 7-9pm at the YMCA gymnasium, Tasman Street. Please come if you live in Mt Cook or nearby, or you are an interested Wellingtonian – someone who cares about what happens in your city.

The meeting will provide a chance to learn more about local urban planning and development issues, to have your say, and to help create a new way of discussing local needs and wishes with government and commercial interests. The format for the meeting allows plenty of time for discussion, having fun, being creative or you can come along just to listen.

The themes we want to discuss for our neighbourhood include:

CHARACTER – the look and feel of a place



TRANSPORT – getting around


CULTURE – the social environment

We also expect to cover immediate concerns about the Memorial Park and the BGI site (Tasman St) development.

Refreshments and cake provided to keep the energy up.

Thats it for now – I’ll post more information over the next couple of days.

If you would like to go on a residents mailing list to receive details about this and other such events, please email us.

Posted by Geoff

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