Protesters are gathered outside Fletcher Building's annual meeting, opposing its housing development plans for the Ihumatao area in Mangere near Auckland International Airport.
Singing in Maori and waving signs saying "Enough is Enough" and "Just Another Injustice", a group of about eight men, women and children are gathered on Federal St outside the SkyCity Convention Centre where just under 400 Fletcher shareholders are meeting.
"Do not let the desecration happen to this area," said a pamphlet from the protesters.
One, who only wanted to be known as Janine, said 480 houses would be built on the last remaining volcanic stonefields in Auckland.
"We don't think enough people know about the old stonefields and what a development like this will do to it. It will destroy it," Janine said. "There's never even been any archaeological assessment and it's a volcanic cone."
But before the AGM, Fletcher's housing chief operating officer, said the plans were for 480 residences but certainly not on the stonefields.
The site had areas of cultural and geological significance but these areas were adjacent to the house sites and certainly separate, Evans said.
Fletcher's has issued a statement outlining its plans for the site, saying the development would comprise both stand-alone homes and some terrace housing. It would include approximately 48 affordable homes as specified by the Special Housing legislation.
Pending Auckland Council approvals, construction would begin in 2017 and the first stage of housing would go on sale the following year.
"Fletcher Living has been consulting with recognised Maori leaders who have the mandate to represent their Iwi. These leaders are supportive of our plans because of Auckland's need for housing and our initiatives to protect the culturally significant geological feature of the area," its statement said.
It also outlined a range of protection plans including buffer zones to protect the Otuataua Stonefields Historic Reserve, lava caves and native trees. It would also provide space for a cultural and information centre near the entrance of the reserve.
Shareholders entering the AGM were handed notices saying: "We plead to you, Fletchers shareholders to stop plans, to ruin forever this area of rich heritage. Stop SHA62," the document said, referring to the Special Housing Area designated number 62, as part of the Auckland Housing Accord, the agreement between the Government and Auckland Council to increase housing supply.
"Our countries (sic) history will never be old. World heritage site, not another development," the group's pamphlet said, referring people to the protest site www.soulstopsha.org.
"Ihumatao, the last remaining area of the volcanic stonefields in Auckland, where people have lived, gardened and farmed for hundreds of years, will be lost to Fletchers bulldozers and construction," the flyer said.