Stonefields neighbours complain after playground opens in front of their houses

The days of children screaming in delight as they whiz along a flying fox might be numbered at one Auckland housing development.

Signs are about to be put up and a noise assessment is under way after complaints about children making too much noise at the new playground next to the Stonefields estate.

Residents there are upset about an adventure kids' park which opened in front of their houses a few weeks ago.

A large flying fox outside their front doors bringing what they say is excessive noise and large areas of sand - used to create a landing zone beneath the equipment - are their main issues.


Alan Gilder, of Galway Bay Tce, said he didn't begrudge children the playground but he wants the flying fox and sand removed, is concerned about three tall climbing towers which he said were a potential hazard and said children endangered locals by riding bikes on footpaths.

"I would like the flying fox removed. It does get very noisy on the weekend and there's sand everywhere. I certainly didn't expect to have a beach on my doorstep. It gets inside. The park is awesome but they haven't put a lot of thought into it - the flying fox generates a lot of squealing."

Another resident, who has since sold her house, said meetings had been held with political representatives to resolve issues with the park.

Mr Gilder said pets defecated in the sand which created another safety hazard.

Stonefields is a joint venture between Fletcher Building and Todd Properties to develop the 2600-residence estate in a former quarry at the foot of Mt Wellington.

Fletcher Residential general manager Ken Lotu-Iiga said he had initially not been aware of issues with the park.

"We have referred a few people on to Todd but it's something that came to light when the park was constructed," he said.

Desley Simpson, chairwoman of the Orakei Local Board which funded the playground, said issues were being discussed with a view to resolution.

"We had a draft for the park outlined over a year ago and there were no houses there then. Officers are arranging for a noise assessment to check levels at the park. They are also investigating options to reduce the areas of sand in the park in order to try and mitigate issues with animals defecating in these areas. Additional signage will also be installed regarding the use of the equipment and to be considerate given the proximity of residential properties."

Auckland councillor Cameron Brewer said issues around residential playgrounds were about striking a balance between providing fun areas for children while respecting what adults wanted and needed.

"Let's not forget that this playground is only a couple of months old, is a huge success given its instant popularity, and the Orakei Local Board is well and truly on top of the issues, " Mr Brewer said.

Not much fun

• Complaints have been made about children making too much noise at the new playground

• The playground includes sand and a flying fox and children have been cycling on footpaths

• Council reps are trying to work out a solution