Home' Special Magazines : Local Life March 2011 Contents Down an unassuming driveway in Birkdale
lies a hidden local gem with aspirations
to become one of the jewels in North Shore’s
crown: a small environment centre with big plans.
With a native plant nursery currently at capacity
cranking out 20,000 new young plants every
year, and a dedicated volunteer base of local
people and businesses, the Kaipatiki Project may
be bursting at the seams but has its sights firmly
set on moving to a new, more accessible home
where it can do even more to keep its corner of
the Shore beautiful.
Last year the 12 year-old Kaipatiki Project won
recognition, along with fellow local restoration
groups, with a North Shore City Council Civic
Award for collectively contributing thousands
of hours of volunteer labour within our parks
each year, particularly through planting days in
local reserves – work which saves North Shore
ratepayers thousands of dollars each year.
Collaboration with others is the name of the game
in the new vision as well – the new centre would
be a social and environmental hub; showcasing
good, low-impact design, enabling community
organisations to pool resources, and providing
a welcoming place where the local community
and those from further afield can visit, learn, be
inspired and take action for the well-being of the
land, their future and each other.
“We are exploring some options right now
of where to locate the new centre”, explains
Kaipatiki Project Manager, Hamish Hopkinson.
“Foremost amongst them is some bare land at
the top of Eskdale Reserve on Glenfield Road.
Although this is on a reserve we believe the site
to be an old cleanfill dump from when the roads
there were built. No trees grow there now, but we
could breathe life back into it and make the area
so productive to ensure that thousands more will
grow and be replanted back into the reserves,
leaving a lasting legacy for future generations.”
The proof of the pudding is evident if you take a
stroll along Kaipatiki Road, by the Easton Park
Parade roundabout. Mature native trees now
line the walkway where road-building had once
threatened to permanently spoil that corner of
Witheford reserve. Those trees were planted in
1998 by the founding volunteers who started the
Kaipatiki Project when it was known as Kaipatiki
Ecological Restoration Project (KERP).
Hamish continues, “Over the years we have
proved that against the odds, individuals can
make a lasting difference. Our business is all
about people, and trees are our excuse for what
we do. Our vision is to expand and diversify
our work for the good of the local area, and we
aim to bring the community along with us on our
ambitious journey. We are already receiving
many heart-felt messages of support for our plans
for a new centre and we want more people to
get involved, particularly as volunteers growing
young plants in our nursery and helping us look
after neighbouring reserves.”
Anyone interested to find out more should visit
www.kaipatiki.org.nz, or pop along to the
Kaipatiki Project Environment Centre at 17
Lauderdale Road, Birkdale on a Monday or
Thursday morning to take part in regular nursery
working bees. Good coffee, biscuits and a warm
welcome are always provided!
For more information contact:
09 482 1172 or 0210596382
Kaipatiki Project Environment Centre intent on growing
An artist’s impression gives a flavour of what the
new centre might look like.
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