The following is a speech I wrote for my Homeschool group speech class on the proposed relocation of the Massey Library as a part of the new Westgate housing development.
How many of you would want to give an extra $50 or $100 dollars to the Waitakere City Council as part of your rates to pay for a new library just five minutes walk away from the current Massey Library? Today I would like to explain to you the reasons why moving the Massey library should not be considered by the Waitakere City Council as part of the new housing development at Westgate. These types of illogical ideas show no sensible consideration for the fact that we are in a recession and that people cannot afford to pay the extra rates that would be caused by this project. The Council is proposing to build a new library just 5 minutes walk away from the current site which is only seven years old.
According to The Aucklander article from the 26th February, council reports from as recently as February this year state that the decision to move the library has already been made. However Council public affairs director Wally Thomas stated in the same article that: “while there have been discussions about what community facilities such as a community centre and a library will be required in the Massey north town centre development, no decisions have been made”. However in June last year the council’s policy and strategy committee resolved to:
2. Agree that land be acquired for a library, community centre, town square and quality park within the first stage of the Massey North Town Centre Special Area, Precinct A development, as set out in the Massey North Town Centre Library, Community Centre and Open Space Development report.
Local residents were in the article quoted as saying “There’s nothing wrong with this one, it’s not that old either” and “You’ve got to be joking”.
Local residents also reportedly have concerns about the cost of building a new library. There is very little logical sense in spending a vast amount of money on making a new building as eco friendly as the current building which has set standards in this area. The fact that the council would have to buy more land off the developer who is proposing to develop this area, would drive the cost up even more .Why not just extend the current library as was already proposed before the whole idea of building a new library was proposed? The community definitely should have a say in what happens as it is their money after all and an awful lot of it too!!!
I would encourage you to contact your local councilors, community board members and the local and national newspapers to tell them what you think about this issue as it is only people pressure which can stop this type of project from going ahead. Otherwise it will be the next “Chinatown” idea. But it will be the one that actually happens!