Panuku has worked tirelessly over the past five years to ensure the Civic Administration Building can be conserved as an enduring landmark in our city (NZ Herald, June 24).
But the building has significant problems - it's leaky, a fire risk and asbestos is embedded throughout.
Panuku has secured a developer to restore the building, save ratepayers more than $80 million in restoration costs and bring much needed amenity to the southern corner of Aotea Square.
The developer is subject to strict provisions to ensure the heritage features of this historic building are protected.
As part of the development agreement, the developer had an obligation to secure a resource consent as well as a building consent for external and structural works prior to land transfer. The next steps are for the developer to produce a heritage management plan. Other consents relating to more detail of design and construction will follow.
With the sale of the land, the developer has engaged a construction contractor. It is standard practice with development projects like this for the detailed design work and shop drawings for the replacement facade to be prepared only after a construction contract has been awarded.
No work can take place on the building until the necessary statutory approvals have been given.
The work the developer will do, will save ratepayers more than $80 million in restoration costs, provide more housing and generate economic activity in the heart of Auckland.
David Rankin, acting chief executive, Panuku.
Water is an essential service and, since the profit motive was introduced, other sensible options have been ignored (NZ Herald, July 2).
It is high time New Zealand copied Australia and encouraged householders to install rain tanks. If those in central Melbourne can be made to include a rain tank in any alterations to their house, the same could happen here.
The excessive human population is placing an increasing strain on water supplies and wastewater systems worldwide.
P A Tobin, Waiheke Island.
Correspondent Patrick Hickey (NZ Herald, July 2) is way off beam about heavy truck limits and their effect on roads. The present 50-tonne limit actually took effect in late 2013.
Trucks operating at 50 tonnes are required to have one more axle than those at 44 tonnes and the Transport Agency says this means they present no additional wear and tear on the roads per tonne of freight carted. The heavier trucks are also required to have more safety features.
Road User Charges for trucks increase exponentially as their weights rise, which encourages operators to fit additional axles, reducing road wear. This is why heavy trucks in New Zealand commonly have eight or nine axles whereas "18-wheelers" in the United States typically have five.
While there certainly is a role for rail in the national freight task, just as there is for coastal shipping and air, Mr Hickey will have a long wait for a train to supply his local supermarket in Devonport.
Jon Addison, Milford.
How comforting it must be for the clients of ACC when the media intervenes and they get their concerns addressed (NZ Herald, June 28). Hopefully Mark, you can move forward and I mean that sincerely for if you become a long-term user of ACC the road can be fraught with difficulties. Everything should be documented/recorded for integrity.
ACC users are often shafted, communication not responded to, questions conveniently not answered or getting the run around impacting on your now compromised health and finances. Perhaps the strategy is that they hope we might just give up. To say nothing of changing protocols and procedures which can vary from office to office or frequently changing case managers.
Navigating your way forward can sometimes be more difficult than the impairments you live with.
So many people live in fear of speaking out in case they receive even less, or are silenced by the confidentiality agreements they signed when compensation was given.
Ann Kidd, Motueka.
In response to Paula Salisbury (NZ Herald, July 2) she states "... this has happened in Oregon owing to a widened interpretation of its provisions".
I challenge her on this, and ask her to provide proof, as Oregon's law is regarded as one of the most consistent in the world and has been in place for since 1997. There have been two changes in those 22 years, one early on which tightened the bill, and the second this year to allow for the those with less than 15 days to live to have a shortened period of time after initially applying - called SB579.
This same law has proven so stable that seven other states in America have also adopted it, including this year alone New Jersey and Maine. There are two other states who have written their own laws.
Esther Richards, Tauranga.
Beyond the pale
Columnist John Roughan was always going to take a dig at Labour, with or without provocation, even if it meant suggesting that Labour MPs were incapable of thinking through the implications of legalising assisted dying (NZ Herald, July 1).
But to suggest that "a person whose quality of life is lower than anyone would like and needs others' help to live would no longer have the dignity and comfort of knowing they can do nothing about the hand life has dealt them" is beyond the pale, even for John Roughan.
The entire point of legalising assisted dying is to empower. What's dignified and comforting about being able to do nothing about your hopeless, irreversible, progressively deteriorating, suffering situation? The eligibility criteria bring everyone down to the same level, no matter where they started from.
No more will die, but fewer will suffer when this bill passes.
Ann David, Waikanae.
Whichever way you dress this nonsense up, this abhorrent plague that has swept our nation is the most vile, hideous, abhorrent form of body denigration ever conceived by mankind.
It's sickening to see both young and old people having tattoos around their necks, arms, legs ... a unrecognisable mess, a blur of black ink being engulfed for what purpose?
It's a sign of a weak mind, there is no logical reason or need to have ink injected into skin as there is nothing attractive, artistic, or any sound sensible reason for having them.
We are born of the earth, not to have ink injected into the largest organ of our precious body, our skin. In some cases, there's more viewable ink than healthy visible skin.
Barry Sharpe, Avondale.
Aged care nurses
Grey Power fully support nurses who work in aged care facilities throughout New Zealand having pay parity with nurses working in all our hospitals and we fully support Simon Wallace, chief executive of the New Zealand Aged Care Association (NZ Herald, July 3).
We support the Nurses Organisation and the association in their current deliberations to ensure aged care nurses receive the same pay as nurses in our hospitals. They were unfortunately overlooked in last year's pay negotiations.
There are nearly 39,000 beds in aged care facilities, compared to 10,000 in public and private hospitals.
As a society, if we really value the care of our older people, we must have pay parity across a common pool of nurses that work in our health care system. Until we do, we will continue to send the message that how we care is not fair.
Mate Marinovich, zone two director, Grey Power Northern.
English is a beautiful language and virtually the language of trade and commerce throughout the Western World. Why then do so many people mispronounce simple words?
Media person Hilary Barry recently took Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern to task for mispronunciation of what was not an easy word. But Hilary herself regularly mispronounces a very simple word and that is a bit of a ... "wurry". There are other media personnel, such as Jamie Mackay, who also have the same problem.
Another simple word which people find hard is "women" (wimmen) - one woman and two or more women. I hear it mispronounced regularly, none more so than by the Opposition Leader Simon Bridges. He can never get the word right.
I was education at a very exclusive school - Te Kuiti District Primary School - back in the mid 1930s but thank God we had good teachers.
Is it the teachers who are at fault or are too many people relying on Google? It can't be relied on, as it recommends the word "colander" be pronounced to rhyme with Hollander when the correct pronunciation is "culander".
Ron Bredenbeck, Gisborne.
Short & Sweet
According to the World Health Organization, one third of the global food production is actually wasted. If that is so, it is a massive failure of humanity, to humanity. B Watkin, Devonport.
Oh dear, ANZ has promised to give poor customer service for being forced to look after NZ long-term interests. Whatever should we do? Oh yes, move all money and loans to another bank in anticipation of their threat being realised. Please continue. Raymond Gabriel, Papakura.
This is exactly what I would expect from Australian businesses and institutions. When I have the opportunity, I shall be withdrawing my business from the ANZ and if you don't like it – get out of my country. Mike Diggins, Royal Oak.
The refusal of ANZ's Shayne Elliott to countenance an increase in equity for the bank's NZ operations should trigger a formal commission of inquiry into this country's banking conduct. Anne Wilks, Devonport.
The other banks will enjoy servicing your unhappy customers and NZ will be pleased to see the end of you. Tis time to leave. You have outstayed your welcome. Dennis Pahl, Tauranga.
Putin claims the influx of migrants into Europe has infringed people's rights. May I suggest that Putin's bombing and murdering innocent civilians in Syria and elsewhere, not to mention having journalists and other opposition figures in his own country and elsewhere killed, rather infringes their rights? AJ Forster, Mt Eden.
A shopkeeper using a cellphone in a car can be fined $60. However if he gives a customer a light-gauge plastic bag he can be fined $100,000! John Robertson, Papamoa Beach.