A one-day planning workshop was held at The Woolshed on 12 March 2016 to plan the first stages of setting up the Pukerua Bay Community Food Forest. Attendance was thinner than previous meetings, nevertheless we made a great deal of collective decisions and progress, and this was summarised into our document, Plan for Autumn-Winter 2016 (PDF). See also the Planting Guide (PDF) produced as the result of earlier research work and meetings.
Many thanks to go to Richard Self for ably leading our workshop process, and for sharing his experiences with the Wellington Innermost Gardens community garden!
The results are in from the Residents’ Association community consultation about the Muri Reserve. Great news – 82% of respondents support a community food forest garden in the reserve! Respondents were also in support of building a board-walk across the wetland to join the two halves of the natural zone, using the amenity area as a venue for events such as summer cushion concerts, and a formed path around the edge to connect Sea Vista Drive with the Muri station platform.
The survey questions are listed here in descending order of support.
Q3. Would you support a board-walk across the wetland to join the two halves of the natural zone?
Q6. Do you support a community garden or food forest in the reserve?
Q5. Should people be able to use the amenity area as a venue for events, such as summer cushion concerts?
Q4. Would you use picnic or resting areas in the natural zone if the walking access was better?
Q2. Do you want a formed path around the edge of the amenity zone to connect Sea Vista Drive with the Muri station platform?
Q1. Do you want better, easier walking access to the reserve from Sea Vista Drive, such as a formed path on the existing track?
Q7. Would you like to see a memorial garden in the reserve?
Q8. Would you or your children use a children’s BMX track in the reserve?
The Pukerua Bay Residents’ Association is conducting some community consultation about how Muri Reserve can be developed, and have published an online survey for residents to complete. If you have ideas about the community garden food forest, please complete the survey before the end of October, and let the Residents’ Association know your views!
Muri Reserve is a peaceful spot about two hectares in area, which sits between Muri Road, Sea Vista Drive and the old Muri railway station.
It is in two distinct zones. To the west is a large, flat, grassed, “amenity” zone that is surrounded with planting and has views of the hills and sea. The eastern side is an undeveloped, sloping, “natural” zone that includes a wetland, which feeds into Haunui Stream.
The PCC web site has information about the reserve and the restrictions on its use. These two zones are managed differently by PCC and it has different objectives for them. It wants to encourage casual recreation and natural play opportunities in the amenity zone, raise awareness of heritage values, and protect ecological values in the natural zone.
Muri Reserve is part of a popular walking circuit around Pukerua Bay, but access from Sea Vista Drive is down a steep slope. Access directly off Muri Road is very difficult as the ground is very steep in one area. There is good access onto the two zones from the Muri Station platform.
The community identified Muri Reserve in the 2011 Pukerua Bay Village Plan as an area that could be used more for recreation. Suggestions from the community for the reserve included:
Further planting with native plants
Continued use of the amenity zone as a dog exercise area (dogs can be exercised there at any time)
Recreational activities, such as sport areas, picnic area, barbecue, playground, BMX track for young children
A board-walk across the wetland to connect the two halves of the natural zone
Community garden/heritage orchard
Event venue (e.g. cushion concerts)
Community garden/food forest
There is strong support for a community garden or orchard on Muri Reserve. There is a keen group of local people wanting to develop one on the flat area at the eastern side of the reserve, behind the houses at the end of Muri Road. Access to this would be via the old railway station platform.