Mt Victoria (Takarunga) closes access to cars
Picturesque views of Auckland City enjoyed from the top of North Shore's Mt Victoria (Takarunga) can now only be enjoyed on foot with vehicle access now blocked off.
The move follows similar decisions for other well-known maunga in the city.
Paul Majurey, one of the organisers of the close hopes the public will now be able to enjoy the maunga by foot.
“It's really about the respect for the taonga, for this tupuna maunga, this taonga tuku iho. And that is the spiritual and cultural values of Ngā Mana Whenua o Tāmaki Makaurau with this sacred maunga.
Majurey also says the Tupuna Maunga Authority was there yesterday to help inform the public of the changes.
“We've had people walking up saying what a wonderful thing it is, including from tourists. We've had some local folks say that they don't like it, they don't agree with it and we respect that worldview. It's really about trying to do the best for the maunga because that's at the heart of what we're about.”
Mt Victoria is not the first mountain to close access to cars it’s also not the last.
Majurey says early last year the same barriers were installed on Mt Eden (Maungawhau) and that decision was met with a lot of dissents.
“There was a large outcry from bus operators, from parts of the tourism industry and also some folk who use cars. There were statements like tourists would never go back to Maungawhau well the reality is that the numbers have increased.”
“There's work at the moment on Pukewīwī, on Puketāpapa/Mt Roskill. Maungakiekie is coming up and there's also longer term, Maungarei and Ōwairaka.”
Access will still be granted to those with limited mobility like the elderly.
The authority now hopes to make improvements to the experience for everyone, making the journey up the mountain even better.