(From Newsletter #27)
Westgate is going to be big – 10,000 jobs and 1,760 homes. This metropolitan centre is being developed from scratch on land that was formerly strawberry gardens.
We will see a high quality town centre at West gate fulfilling its potential as the civic hub of West Auckland as our population grows. We will ensure the voice of the community is heard and your needs are met as these developments progress, not 10 years after.
Since the 1970s west Auckland has developed as a “dormitory” suburb where people commute to other areas to work, shop and be entertained. The old Waitakere City Council area was home to 15 per cent of the region’s people but only 8 per cent of the region’s jobs. A regionally important employment area at Westgate is being built to address this jobs imbalance. There will also be a new metropolitan centre and opportunities for high quality apartment living, business and retail areas. It must be a metropolitan centre we will all be proud of. It must deliver a thriving, bustling new community to Henderson-Massey and to Auckland.
It is critical this massive new “Greenfield” project is well planned and well implemented. The risk of fast population growth resulting in social problems is well known in Henderson-Massey. The Westgate project must meet the needs of its new communities. It should have all the necessary infrastructure facilities and services such as policing, courts and social welfare in place before people move to the area. We will make sure the voice of the local community is heard throughout this development. We will advocate to make sure that enough community facilities and schools are built, along with a new sports and recreation precinct to cater for a range of sporting codes.
The new Massey North/Westgate Library will be built to serve the new Westgate housing development. It is planned that this will be a large library with an extensive collection, while the existing Massey Library building is to be converted to create additional recreation space. As a totally new development, Westgate town centre is expected to both provide jobs and add more services to our region. We will be out there, encouraging the old and new Westgate businesses to form a collaborative Business Improvement District for the area.