From the Editor

Never in the history of Ponsonby News have we ever had 10 letters to the editor. And there were more but we didn’t have room for three others. Surprisingly none were to do with Covid!

Christmas is not cancelled at Ponsonby Central... Santa has been given a green light exemption to come to town this Christmas. The famous Ponsonby Central Santa is back, and with him he brings a gift for Aucklanders. Reflecting on a difficult year particularly for retail and hospitality, with many Christmas events cancelled, bringing some light-hearted joy to Auckland residents seems all the more important.

Santa might be back, but he has a few modifications to make sure the joy of Christmas is all he spreads. The mask donning, double jabbed figure is a sign of the times and while his outfit might be risqué, the importance of mask-wearing is not lost on someone who jumps down so many chimneys in one night.

With a celebration bottle in one hand and oversized ceremonial scissors in the other, he is getting ready to unwrap the gift of new eateries, restaurants, a boutique movie theatre, and office spaces, that are set to open at Ponsonby Central in early 2022.

While the city has been locked down, work on the site has continued and with their Santa partner this year, Aspec Construction, the development is on track for its grand opening. Aspec Construction has worked for years on site to create 80 underground car parks which opened in 2020 and now the three levels above, it seems fitting to create this year's Santa together as we near completion of the development.

Ponsonby Central and Aspec Construction are proud to bring us the 2021 Santa and some life back into our city.

In this issue my colleague John Elliott has covered some interesting issues: Starting with solar panel highways, enabling housing supply

and other matters amendment bill, Housing crisis - Shared equity solution possible and the Seabin Project – which aims to clean up pollution in harbours.

In her Christmas feature this month Helene Ravlich spoke with some of her favourite locals about what their plans are for the holiday season, what they are eyeing up for loved ones, and what they hope to see under their trees come Christmas morning. Vicki Taylor makes a beautiful front cover.

Finally, thanks everyone for your support – we are living through challenging times – but Christmas is coming which gives us something to look forward to. (MARTIN LEACH)

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Published 3 December 2021