Mt Albert locals say they'll block the removal of hundreds of trees off an inner-city
The Tūpuna Maunga Authority, which manages the city's 14 tūpuna maunga (ancestral mountains), plans to remove 345 exotic trees from Mt Albert as part of a long-term native restoration project.
Set to take place between November 11 and mid-December, the citywide project aims to reconnect native ecological networks within and between the 14 maunga and the wide landscape, while improving the sight line.
But protesters plan to block the entrance to Ōwairaka from 6am onwards today, stopping construction crews from accessing the area.
Honour the Maunga, made up of concerned local residents, is one of the groups protesting the tree felling.
Leader Anna Radford said the group is mustering as many people as possible, aiming to prevent contractors cutting down the trees.
"From our perspective, it's important to point out that our actions will be safe, peaceful and respectful," she said.
"But having said that, we're going to do what we can to stop any trees from being felled."
She's expecting a "decent amount" of people to turn up in protest of the felling this week.
Almost 3000 new shrubs have already been planted on Mt Albert, in the first instalment of 13,000 natives expected to be planted in the next few years.
"That's 345 trees worth of birds, insects and biota that no longer have homes," Radford said.
"Our group's sole focus is to save the trees, full stop."
Another group protesting the felling will include members of Occupy Garnet Road and some locals.
A spokeswoman for the group planning the protest said residents are angry there has been no consultation over the planned felling and the action is illegal under the Local Government Act.
Residents want to know how 345 protected trees could be cut down in the middle of the climate crisis, she said.
"They want to see succession planting of native trees, so there can be a graceful transition over the next 20 years."