Archive | Spatial plan

Giant Auckland Plan revision completed, task programme to come, omission already spotted

Auckland Council adopted the Auckland Plan 2050 yesterday, replacing the original plan adopted in 2012.

A reader asked me yesterday where this plan dealt with public spaces, and protecting & developing new ones.

It ought to be in the environment & cultural heritage section, starting at page 171 of the 362-page draft document, but the message there is small. In the fourth of the 7 paragraphs on green corridors, the network of public spaces & parks, and cultural heritage sites, the draft comment is one of hope & aspiration, not of practical intent: “As Auckland grows, additional pressure will be put on these spaces, and additional spaces will be needed.”

Exhorting Aucklanders to add open spaces amid the rush to lay a carpet of houses over the region is akin to the more directly obvious exhortation for residents to mow the public berms outside their homes: “You do it.”

When you look more closely at these messages, you will see an abdication of responsibility in places where, for example, council staff mowed those berms (not everywhere – in Rodney, it was taken for granted that residents did this). But the message needs to be clear that provision will be made in development plans for new areas of open space, and it’s not there.

Planning committee chair Chris Darby said in a release post-plan adoption yesterday: “The plan sets the direction for Auckland’s growth & development over the next 30 years, responding to the key opportunities & challenges faced by Auckland.

“The Auckland Plan 2050 focuses on the critical issues that we & our children will have to deal with over the next 30 years – the unprecedented pace of population growth, how housing & infrastructure needs are met, ensuring that our prosperity is shared among all Aucklanders, and dealing with the increasing pressures on our stunning environment, not least climate change.”

Cllr Darby said early engagement with communities on the new plan identified better housing, reinventing transport & a healthy natural environment as the fundamental issues for Auckland’s future.

Feedback in March led to the development of a new ‘quality of life’ focus area and changes in the timing & number of areas for development. Transport outcomes now reflect the 2018 update of the Auckland transport alignment project (ATAP), a partnership between central government agencies & the council.

Cllr Darby said that, using a new digital-first approach, the plan would be website-based and available by August.

What you see on the website today is a draft containing rewrites, demonstrating the extensive effort that has gone into the plan – despite the criticism of over-exhortation, less of feet on the ground.

Cllr Darby again: “The confirmation of the Auckland Plan 2050 & the 10-year budget 2018-28 (on Tuesday) is the culmination of 8 years of integrated planning for Auckland’s future. Auckland Council is the only regional authority to undertake planning on such a detailed & long-range scale.

“The work isn’t over. An implementation framework will follow later this year, along with a set of targets & priorities. This enables us to move into a massive ‘build-it’ decade.”

Planning committee agenda 5 June, Auckland Plan items:
9, Adoption of the Auckland Plan 2050
Auckland Plan 2050 text
Auckland Plan 2050 maps
Submissions overview
Summary of feedback & response
Auckland Plan 2050 website improvements
Local board resolutions
10, Bringing the Hauraki Gulf Islands into the Auckland unitary plan
Planning committee resolution – place-based spatial planning programme
Options analysis – process for bringing the HGI into the AUP

Attribution: Council committee agenda, draft plan, release.

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Revised Auckland Plan up for approval

Auckland Council’s planning committee is set to adopt the second iteration of the Auckland Plan this Tuesday.

The plan promises that already developed areas will be redeveloped & intensified, future urban areas will get newly established communities, and rural areas outside the urban footprint will see only a small amount of additional growth.

The website (the digital plan) will be updated with the final plan content and minor functionality & design improvements by the end of July.

The council produced the first Auckland Plan in 2012, with an outlook over the next 30 years. This refresh plan has a timeframe through to 2050.

Council strategic advice manager Denise O’Shaughnessy says in her report to the committee a substantive change from the refresh draft prepared last year is the development of a new “quality of life” focus area under the Belonging & participation outcome.

Changes are proposed in the development strategy with regard to development areas & their timing. Changes are also proposed to meet the national policy statement on urban development capacity. The transport & access outcome reflects the 2018 update of the Auckland transport alignment project.

Following adoption, the council will:

  • finalise the digital plan and “closing the loop” with submitters & key stakeholders
  • seek committee approval for an implementation framework & priority initiatives for implementation, and
  • focus immediately on the monitoring & reporting framework, including the preparation of a baseline monitoring report for the 33 measures in the plan and the development of a set of core targets in collaboration with the Government.

Links to Tuesday’s agenda items are below.

The plan submitted for adoption says Auckland will move to a multi-nodal model over the next 30 years as Albany, Westgate & Manukau & their catchments show how critical they will be to growth: “Over time, they will offer a broad range of business & employment activity, civic services and residential options.”

These nodes will be interconnected by a range of efficient transport links, while satellite towns Warkworth & Pukekohe will be rural nodes.

The draft plan envisages a “quality compact” approach:

  • increasing economic productivity through proximity
  • using existing infrastructure better
  • bringing more people closer to their work: “Greater population density supports faster, more frequent public transport services”, and
  • rural productivity & character can be maintained.

This model also envisages a better environment and a more vibrant Auckland socially & culturally.

To ensure there’s capacity for both residential & business growth, the national policy statement on urban development capacity requires the council to watch 3 horizons: 1-3 years, 4-10 years & 11-30 years.

The unitary plan’s “enabled” extra capacity is about 1 million dwellings – nearly 3 times demand at the present rate – while “feasible” capacity is 326,000. Auckland’s building consents for the last 12 months totalled 11,629, but that consent rate would increase if the Government’s KiwiBuild scheme takes off, if lending structure regulations are loosened or if ratios of income:home prices are narrowed.

According to the draft plan, feasible capacity is enough for 10 years but would fall 82,000 short over 30 years.

What the committee needs to take into account

The planning committee’s responsibility is to “guide the physical development & growth of Auckland through a focus on land use planning, housing & the appropriate provision of infrastructure and strategic projects associated with these activities. Key responsibilities include:

  • Relevant regional strategy & policy
  • Infrastructure strategy & policy
  • Unitary plan
  • Spatial plans
  • Plan changes to operative plans
  • Housing policy & projects
  • Special housing areas
  • City centre development
  • Tamaki regeneration
  • Built heritage
  • Urban design
  • Environmental matters relating to the committee’s responsibilities
  • Acquisition of property relating to the committee’s responsibilities and within approved annual budgets.

The committee also has an overview of initiatives of the following council-controlled organisations that have a significant impact upon the implementation of the Auckland Plan & other relevant plans, policies & strategies:

  • Panuku Development Auckland
  • Auckland Transport
  • Watercare Services Ltd, and
  • Regional Facilities Auckland (stadiums).

Links to planning committee agenda items, Tuesday 5 June at 9.30am, Town Hall:
9, Adoption of the Auckland Plan 2050
Auckland Plan 2050 text
Auckland Plan 2050 maps
Submissions overview
Summary of feedback & response
Auckland Plan 2050 website improvements
Local board resolutions
10, Bringing the Hauraki Gulf Islands into the Auckland unitary plan

Attribution: Council committee agenda.

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Court rejects housing on Crater Hill & peninsula near airport

Auckland Council issued a release today welcoming an Environment Court decision that the Crater Hill (Nga Kapua Kohuora) volcanic cone & the elite soils of Pukaki Peninsula – between Auckland Airport & Papatoetoe – are to remain protected from residential development & future urbanisation.

The court declined an appeal by the Self Family Trust & adjacent landowners against the Auckland unitary plan, which zones Crater Hill & Pukaki Peninsula as rural land outside the rural urban boundary.

The South-western Motorway (State highway 20) cuts through part of the hill at Mangere.

The trust had proposed including the land inside the rural urban boundary to allow building up to 575 houses on certain parts of Crater Hill and appealed against the council’s unitary plan decision.

Landowners saw parts of Pukaki Peninsula as a future urban zone allowing urbanisation over areas of very productive land.

A coalition of 5 community groups & over 800 signatories petitioned the council in 2016 to save the hill & peninsula from development, which would have allowed the houses to be built on the region’s last undeveloped volcano.

The petition was led by the Geoscience Society, Civic Trust Auckland, SOUL ((Save Our Unique Landscapes) campaign, Friends of Maungawhau & Redoubt Ridge Environmental Action Group.

They argued that the unitary plan described the volcanic cones & fields as “defining natural & physical features that provide a unique setting and contribute significantly to Aucklanders’ quality of life”.

The petition added: “Since 1950, 65% of the 26 volcanoes in the southern half of the Auckland volcanic field have been demolished, built over or severely damaged. Crater Hill is the last one left in private ownership and is currently in remarkably good shape in spite of the South-western Motorway & the owners’ quarrying & back-filling activity inside one part of the crater. The recommended unitary plan has an objective (D10.2.4) that states: ‘Where practicable, the restoration & enhancement of outstanding natural features is promoted.’”

Auckland Council planning committee chair Chris Darby said today the appeal was a test of the unitary plan provisions: “At the time the unitary plan was introduced, we were acutely aware of the need to protect the ‘green lungs’ of Auckland and ensure that the natural & cultural landscape of Auckland would be safeguarded.

In the Environment Court decision, Judge Jon Jackson and environment commissioners Eileen von Dadelszen & James Baines said that, while the decision would have implications for housing elsewhere in the city, housing demand wasn’t a simple issue: “It is not a case of ‘push the balloon of supply in here and it will bulge out elsewhere.’”

Taking into account the existing markets available for housing, the court was satisfied its decision would have minimal impact on housing supply & prices.

“Standing back and looking at all relevant considerations, properly weighted, we consider that Auckland Council drew the rural urban boundary in the correct place so as to exclude Pukaki Peninsula & Crater Hill. Its decision should be confirmed as creating an appropriate strong defensible boundary in this area.”

Attribution: Council release, Civic Trust.

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Auckland Plan refresh approved for consultation, 2 private plan changes to be notified

Auckland Council’s planning committee approved the revised draft Auckland Plan for formal public consultation yesterday.

A joint consultation on this plan and on the council’s 10-year budget, 2018-28, will open on 28 February and run until 28 March. The council’s governing body will approve the consultation document on 7 February.

The Auckland Plan, first adopted in 2012 and now reviewed for the second time, is the spatial plan that sets the direction for how, where & when Auckland will grow over the next 30 years.

Other planning committee business

Manurewa Takanini Papakura integrated area plan:

The committee endorsed the Manurewa Takanini Papakura Integrated Area Plan, which provides a planning framework to guide how the area develops over the next 30 years.

2 private plan change requests under new unitary plan

Otahuhu, King’s College, Mangere & Hospital Rds:

The committee agreed to publicly notify King’s College’s private plan change request to rezone 2 land parcels, one to the north-east of the main campus and the other to the south.

The private plan change will rezone land adjoining Mangere Rd from special purpose – school to terrace housing & apartment buildings, and land adjacent to Hospital Rd from terrace housing & apartment buildings and single house zones to special purpose – school.

Ellerslie, 614-616 Great South Rd, Goodman Property Trust:

The committee agreed to publicly notify Goodman Property Trust’s private plan change request to rezone 614-616 Great South Rd from business park to mixed use.

Link: Planning committee agenda 28 November

Attribution: Council releases.

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Notification sets Whenuapai on course for urbanisation

Auckland Council will publicly notify the proposed plan change tomorrow to rezone 124ha at Whenuapai from the future urban zone to urban zones. The submission period will close on Thursday 19 October and independent commissioners will hear submissions in the first half of 2018.

In the map: The central purple zones are for light industry. The yellow to brown zones are for a range of residential intensities.

It’s the first step in urbanisation of rural Whenuapai and is in the first batch of plan changes under the new unitary plan, now operative in part. Others approved for notification by the council’s planning committee on 5 September were for extension of the Auranga subdivision at Drury and for Fletcher Residential Ltd’s subdivision at the Three Kings quarry.

The plan change for stage 1 development in the south-east corner of Whenuapai provides for 124ha of light industrial land and capacity for 4-5000 homes.

Planning committee chair Chris Darby said a large amount of infrastructure was required for the greenfield area, and the plan change aimed to ensure infrastructure was in place to support all development.

Issues it addresses include managing stormwater run-off and ensuring there are opportunities to enhance the degraded stream & coastal environment, mostly through planting along streams.

The proposed plan change would also protect an historic heritage area in Clarks Lane and an anti-aircraft battery site on Spedding Rd.

Assuming plan change approval, stage 1 construction is likely to occur between 2018-28.

Stage 2 of the larger Whenuapai area is constrained by the new Northern Interceptor wastewater pipeline due to be built in 2026, and transport infrastructure outlined in the supporting growth strategy, which is necessary to support development. A further plan change will be required for stage 2.

Cllr Darby said: Notification of the plan change for stage 1 is a positive sign, showing that we’re moving from the planning phase to actually making land available for real homes that people can live in.

“It follows successful structure planning for the area – the first in a number of structure plans that will eventually pave the way for up to 137,000 new homes in north, north-west & southern greenfield areas.”

Attribution: Council release & committee agenda.

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Second round for Auranga precinct confirms Drury as major growth centre

Drury, 35km south of Auckland’s city centre, is the new centre of activity in the Auckland region, with construction of between 6100 & 10,800 homes anticipated on 1000ha there within 10 years.

That’s a potential population explosion of 30,000 people in an area that was all greenfields 2 years ago, apart from the small Drury township which, at the 2013 census, had 1200 homes and a population of just over 3500 – up by only 140 in 6 years.

Image above: The masterplan for the first stage of Auranga.

A planned, and very large, piece of it is the industrial expansion by Stevenson Group Ltd from its quarry in the hills east of State Highway 1 across to the highway. The company secured planning approval in 2013 to rezone 361ha of rural & quarry land for a mix of industrial & business development.

In 2015, Charles Ma’s Karaka & Drury Ltd had its 68ha Drury precinct 1 proposal approved as a special housing area, projecting its whole development would yield 1000-1500 new homes over 7-9 years, with the first homes ready for occupation by the end of 2017. The land was rural, but zoned future urban under the proposed Auckland unitary plan.

Kiwi Property Group Ltd spotted Drury’s potential and bought some of 51.3ha at Drury in April, with agreements to secure the balance, to create a new town centre next to Stevenson’s site. Kiwi’s 3 greenfield sites are next to the junction of the Southern Motorway, Great South Rd and the North Island main trunk railway line.

Auckland Council’s structure plan map for Drury-Opaheke. The future urban-zoned land, including Auranga 1B, is in yellow. Stevenson’s Drury South industrial precinct, in purple, is at the lower right of the map.

Plan change accepted for notification

Last Tuesday, Mr Ma’s company was at Auckland Council’s planning committee seeking approval to extend its Auranga subdivision from the initial precinct 1, and to rezone the 84.6ha extension as mixed housing urban & mixed housing suburban, providing for about 1300 more homes. The committee accepted the private plan change, which will now be publicly notified & opened to submissions.

There was potential for a hiccup, because the council had already turned down Mr Ma’s request to rezone part of this land in 2015 for 2 main reasons: concerns about the impact of the proposed development on existing transport infrastructure, and the need for a structure plan to be prepared for the wider area.

Structure & catchment plans are the bane of developers’ lives because they invariably follow the developer’s bright ideas – the country has not been mapped out in precise structure plans well in advance of development dreams yet to be dreamt.

The council plans set limits which are often inconvenient, slow in arriving & expensive. For both developer & council, those plans are a cost incurred well before any likely return from development, and subsequent rates payments.

In this case, the council has embarked on its own structure plan process for a wider area running from Drury up Opaheke Rd to Papakura. However, the report to Tuesday’s committee meeting by principal planner Barry Mosley & planning manager Celia Davison acknowledged that Mr Ma’s company had lodged its private plan change before the council embarked on its own Drury-Opaheke structure planning process and it wouldn’t compromise that process, as the land subject to the private plan change request was relatively confined, the proposed land use was the most appropriate and wouldn’t foreclose the consideration of other appropriate outcomes.

“In short,” the council planners wrote, “the council’s ability to pursue a full range of options for the Drury-Opaheke area through the structure plan process will not be constrained by the private plan change request.

“Secondly, bulk infrastructure is already proposed to service land within the adjacent Drury 1 precinct, and preliminary assessments indicate that this bulk infrastructure can be logically & efficiently designed to service the Auranga B1 land & parts of the wider Drury area.”

The council planning committee adopted its refreshed future urban land supply strategy on 4 July, confirming its 1016ha growth target at Drury west of State Highway 1. The council expects land release in that wider area to start in 2022 north of State Highway 22, and in 2028 south of State Highway 22.

Ma to leverage off infrastructure he’s creating in first precinct

Charles Ma at the launch of Auranga stage 1 in October 2016.

Mr Ma’s company intends to leverage off the infrastructure he’s creating in the initial Auranga area to develop the proposed B1 private plan change area.

The whole area requires new trunk wastewater sewerage, with connecting branches. A wastewater pump station is being built at 207 Bremner Rd in the Drury 1 precinct, designed to service a population of 10,000, including the residential component of Stevenson’s Drury South development and its Drury South industrial precinct.

In addition, a site is being reserved for a Watercare Services Ltd pump station that can service additional dwellings and enable Watercare to develop a wider wastewater network.

Watercare & Veolia Water Solutions Technologies NZ Ltd (which took over Papakura District’s water supply before the super-city was created in 2010) are working through a number of possible solutions to ensure security of water supply for Drury. The council planners said: “At this point there is reliance on one bulk supply point via connection to water sourced from the Waikato River. A possible solution to ensuring a backup water supply is to establish a second bulk supply point with connection to a Hunua water source.”

They said transport infrastructure upgrades would be required to enable development within the Drury 1 precinct, and Mr Ma’s Karaka & Drury was finalising an infrastructure funding agreement to enable delivery of upgrades, which will also largely unlock the potential of the Auranga B1 land.

The Karaka & Drury company intends to provide all necessary stormwater infrastructure within Auranga B1.

The council planning committee approved a structure planning programme for Drury-Opaheke on 1 August, to be completed within 12 months. Key strategic issues to be considered in that include:

  • the location of & appropriate number of centres
  • transport infrastructure, including the location & number of train stations
  • the location & mix of residential & commercial/industrial land; and
  • the location, size & function of parks, reserves & community facilities.

The council planners said in their report aspects of the Auranga plan change would need to be tested through the submission & hearings process, but added: “The scope & extent of the changes sought do not, in themselves, threaten the purpose & principles of the Resource Management Act when considered at this preliminary stage. The private plan change request is therefore considered to be in accordance with sound resource management practice.”

Local boards differ on timing

Papakura Local Board members didn’t support the Auranga plan change request now as they considered it premature and that it would place significant pressure on existing infrastructure: “They have also expressed concerns that the request, if accepted (and when combined with current development existing & proposed in the wider area), would adversely impact on the Drury motorway exchange & infrastructure.”

However, the Franklin Local Board supported the proposed plan change in principle, saying it was a logical extension of the existing special housing area & Drury 1 precinct. Franklin board members were also pleased it sought to develop a sustainable new community in an area that is well placed to deliver new centres, jobs & infrastructure improvements, and it could be progressed alongside work on the Drury-Opaheke structure plan. The Franklin board said the council & Mr Ma should seek a partnership approach to make the 2 processes complementary.

Council development programme office general manager John Dunshea told the committee water from the Flanagans Rd bulk supply point would also pass through the Auranga land to the Hingaia Peninsula, which had been constrained by the lack of bulk supply.

Cllr Daniel Newman said Hingaia had already been live-zoned from future urban when it didn’t have the infrastructure to take new housing, but he expected the whole area east of State Highway 1 to face challenges “sooner than in a decade” – Drury East in particular.

“That will make this footprint in this part of Auckland attractive to the market and we will have to do structure planning to implement that.”

Links:
Planning committee agenda, Tuesday 5 September
11, Auckland unitary plan (operative in part) – private plan change request from Karaka & Drury Ltd – Auranga B1

Earlier stories:
7 April 2017: Kiwi Property plans new town centre next to Stevenson’s Drury development
31 October 2016: Work starts on 3 striking special housing area projects
24 August 2016: Work set to start after fast approval for Auranga special housing area at Drury
4 July 2015: 2 large special housing areas for Franklin
30 August 2013: Drury South industrial area plan change & MUL extension approved
4 September 2012: Drury South plan changes notified

Attribution: Council committee meeting & agenda.

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Council starts public process for city centre & waterfront planning refresh, plus 3 subdivision plan changes

Auckland Council’s planning committee agreed yesterday to a refresh programme for the city centre & waterfront, but it will be 10 months before the final version of it is decided.

It’s also complicated by requirements evolving for the America’s Cup yachting contest to be held in Auckland in 2019, and where the estimated 30,000m² of land for the bases plus water spaces for the yachts might go.

The large programme of works for city centre & waterfront would be implemented under a review of the original central business district & waterfront plans completed in 2012.

But first the councillors & Independent Maori Statutory Board members have to put their money caps on, in their roles as the finance & performance committee, to prioritise works. That committee’s scheduled to meet (twice) in a fortnight.

And then the whole shebang has to go out to public consultation early next year as part of the council’s long-term plan review, returning to the council for signoff just before the start of the new financial year on 1 July 2018.

3 plan changes & a tidy-up under the new unitary plan

A second novelty yesterday came in the form of 4 plan changes – the first batch under the super-city’s unitary plan, which combines an updated composite of all the district plans of the councils 7 territorial predecessors and also includes an updated regional policy statement.

The unitary plan is still not fully operative, with parts of it before the courts. 2 of the proposed changes to it before the committee yesterday were private – from Karaka & Drury Ltd (Charles Ma) to extend its Auranga subdivision at Drury, and from Fletcher Residential Ltd, recognising an agreement with opponents of the company’s Three Kings quarry residential development.

The other 2 plan changes were brought by the council, one for its rezoning of land at Whenuapai from future urban so development can start on part of it over the next 4 years, with later stages set for development starting in 2028.

The last change, from the council, is to correct technical errors & anomalies discovered in the unitary plan.

  • You can check the detail in the refresh and the plan change proposals through the links below. I’ll roll out articles on each of them, and yesterday’s debate, over the next few hours.

Planning committee agenda, Tuesday 5 September
9, City centre & waterfront planning refresh
11, Auckland unitary plan (operative in part) – private plan change request from Karaka & Drury Ltd – Auranga B1
12, Auckland unitary plan (operative in part) – private plan change request by Fletcher Residential Ltd – Three Kings 
13, Auckland unitary plan (operative in part) – proposed plan change – Whenuapai 
14, Auckland unitary plan (operative in part) – proposed plan change – administrative plan change – to correct technical errors & anomalies

Story, 1 September 2017: Grand downtown & waterfront plans raise the question: The money?

Attribution: Council committee agenda & meeting.

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Grand downtown & waterfront plans raise the question: The money?

Some grand plans to advance Auckland Council’s 5-year-old waterfront & city centre plans will go to the council’s planning committee on Tuesday.

Image above: A Wynyard Quarter “regional destination park” is proposed at the outer point where the idea of an iconic structure was early tossed around.

2 words are central to the planning review: “Whose money?”

Take these 4 statements sprinkled through the report to the committee:

  • “The proposed funding & delivery scenarios are to be interrogated & tested during the long-term plan process. Priority projects will be supported by business cases, including a total value analysis. Once decisions have been made, they will be incorporated into the long-term plan public consultation.”
  • “For Wynyard Quarter, key drivers for the refresh include the need to create more feasible development packages, in order that returns from private development can contribute to the costs of public infrastructure & open space.”
  • “A realignment of the Wynyard Point park… delivering more rational development sites for private investment.”
  • “Funding is in place for the Auckland Transport bus projects but a realignment of or addition to budgets for other projects will be required.”

Those financial points are crucial to how streets around the central city and the waterfront itself are to offer better use, and how public transport will fit, but they aren’t the priority.

What is priority is to unleash a feast of ideas. What ought to be priority is a co-ordinated view of how these ideas can be brought forward practically, and funded.

Weighing on the offer are these:

  • The future of the port’s 2 functions, cruise & cargo
  • Hosting of the America’s Cup and hosting of the APEC (Asia-Pacific Economic Co-operation) meeting, both in 2021.

Devising a programme and working out the requirements for the yachting event make sense because it’s a mega-dollar occasion from which Auckland stands to profit enormously. The visit of the foreign politicians is one the city ought to be able to take in its stride.

The next round of publicly discussing the council’s future port study is scheduled for the planning committee’s October meeting. Again, money is the key feature – firstly, what Auckland stands to lose by sending the freight business out of town; secondly, what it might gain by having a new port conveniently nearby; thirdly, how a cruise sector perhaps treble the size it is now can be accommodated.

Down at ground level, the planning report touches on bus routes, pedestrian & cycle-friendly access between the city waterfront & Wynyard Quarter, and pedestrian boulevarding the city-centre few blocks of Quay St (though it’s not spelled out quite so plainly).

But for all the focus on improving public transport access, the report suggestions emanating from Auckland Transport would have isthmus bus commuters at the bottom of town walking about 3 blocks further than they do now to reach their stop. Without too much cover from the elements.

The whole committee series of workshops has been conducted behind closed doors, and there is no apparent reason for that, other than the belief that participants in a discussion should be free to speak their minds without the rest of the world hearing, without statements being taken out of context, and – most importantly, but usually knocked back to least important – without the public being taken on the discussion journey until something concrete is laid out.

What is mapped out is the use of the public realm – affecting many private interests – and if discussion is public there’s a good chance somebody outside the forum will add an idea that hadn’t been thought of.

Despite the freedom of all that private discussion, the answer to the crucial financial questions is not in the agenda. If the council runs to form, it will skirt the question and the uncertainty will remain.

The report’s authors were Senior Panuku project planning leader Joanna Smith, Panuku & Ateed cruise project manager John Smith and Auckland Transport city centre & rapid transport network initiatives manager Daniel Newcombe.

Plan changes on the way

Also on the agenda for the planning committee’s meeting on Tuesday are a number of plan changes for the Auranga development at Drury, from Fletcher Residential Ltd at 3 Kings, for Whenuapai and to correct technical errors & anomalies in the unitary plan, which is now largely operative.

Links:
Planning committee agenda, Tuesday 5 September (9.30am, Town Hall)
9, City centre & waterfront planning refresh
11, Auckland unitary plan (operative in part) – private plan change request from Karaka & Drury Ltd – Auranga B1
12, Auckland unitary plan (operative in part) – private plan change request by Fletcher Residential Ltd – Three Kings 
13, Auckland unitary plan (operative in part) – proposed plan change – Whenuapai 
14, Auckland unitary plan (operative in part) – proposed plan change – administrative plan changeto correct technical errors & anomalies

Attribution: Council committee agenda, mayoral release.

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Mediation agreement signed for Ryman’s Devonport village

Ryman Healthcare Ltd said on Friday its new Devonport village was set to proceed following mediation talks with objectors.

The Devonport Peninsula Precincts Society appealed against the development to the Environment Court after Auckland Council planning commissioners granted resource consent in January for the village on Ngataringa Rd.

Ryman, the society, the NZ Institute of Architects & Urban Auckland have since been in mediation over the retirement village plans for the 4.2ha site owned by Ngati Whatua Orakei.

Ryman development manager Andrew Mitchell said differences were resolved amicably and all parties had signed an agreement. The resolution requires final approval from the Environment Court.

The 6 buildings of the proposed village were up to 6 storeys high, and Devonport residents opposed bulk & height. The parties haven’t disclosed changes to height or design, or how the increased traffic on Lake Rd will be dealt with.

It’s the first largescale consent on the North Shore considered under Auckland’s new unitary plan, and the society said on its website the factors opponents raised would remain relevant for the other largescale development sites (see map above).

Link: Devonport Peninsula Precincts Society

Attribution: Company release, society website.

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Committee progresses unitary plan changes, city centre masterplan, waterfront, Panuku programme, Onehunga project, land transport, northern corridor, Whenuapai, sites of significance

Auckland Council’s planning committee began its 6-hour meeting yesterday with input from advocates of no port extension into the Waitemata Harbour, and of relocating the freight operation.

Shortly after, the committee gave its support in principle to an inner dolphin off Queens Wharf as the preferred option for berthing large cruise ships.

The public input came from Shane Vuletich for Urban Auckland, Committee for Auckland & Stop Stealing our Harbour, with Richard Didsbury, Sir Stephen Tindall & Julie Stout.

But the bulk of the day’s meeting was about the “refresh” of the council’s overarching Auckland Plan, completed in 2012 and up for its first review.

The committee has held 4 workshops and had numerous presentations on the Auckland Plan, but also on various other planning documents since last October’s election.

The committee approved a streamlined approach rather than fullscale review with the intention of making the plan more strategic, integrated, focused on spatial issues, a smaller document and one that will be digitally accessible.

It approved a process of early targeted engagement with communities from May-June  on Auckland’s big issues and on the high level strategic direction of the refreshed Auckland Plan.

This article is a brief summary of matters the committee considered. I’ll write in more detail in a few days.

Other items considered:

Item 10, city centre masterplan delivery & implementation, 3 projects to be updated:

  • Victoria linear park & midtown east-west public transport
  • Quay St harbour edge boulevard & Hobson St flyover
  • Queen St, issue identification & project implications.

Item 11, Waterfront planning & implementation:

A targeted refresh of the waterfront plan is underway, focusing on development of Wynyard Pt and optimising the use of the central wharves. 

Item 12, Update on Panuku work programme:

The committee endorsed Avondale as an “unlock” location, where Panuku facilitates development opportunities for private sector investment in town centres.

A high level project plan will go to the committee later this year for approval.

Item 13, Onehunga high level project plan:

The committee adopted Panuku Development Auckland’s high level project plan for the transformation of the Onehunga town centre & surrounding area.

Item 14, Submission on draft national policy statement on land transport:

The committee approved the council’s submission.

Item 15, Northern corridor improvements project, political reference group & delegations:

The committee approved extending delegations so the reference group can provide direction & decisions on the council’s position during the board of inquiry hearing on east-west link project.

Item 19, Unitary plan (operative in part) – future plan changes and processing of private plan changes:

A report was presented on future council-initiated changes to the new unitary plan and the committee approved the criteria for dealing with private plan changes over the next 2 years.

Item 16, Draft Whenuapai plan change – approval & public engagement:

The committee approved a consultation process that will allow for the implementation of the Whenuapai structure plan, which the council approved last September. Public consultation will run from 10 April-14 May.

Item 17, Development of plan change to the unitary plan & Hauraki Gulf islands section of the district plan on sites of significance to mana whenua:

The committee gave approval for the council to engage with mana whenua & landowners on 270 nominated sites of significance to mana whenua as the next step to preparing a plan change. 

Item 18, Unitary plan, assessment of errors to produce the first 2 administrative plan changes:

The committee agreed to develop 2 administrative plan changes, one to correct errors, anomalies & technical details to the text & maps and the other to correct errors in the notable tree schedule.

Links – from committee agenda:
9, Auckland Plan refresh, engagement approach & proposed options

<ahref=”http://infocouncil.aucklandcouncil.govt.nz/Open/2017/03/PLA_20170328_AGN_6720_AT.htm#PDF2_ReportName_52321″ target=”_blank”>10, Auckland city centre masterplan (2012): Delivery & implementation, progress update
Addendum (item 11)
11, Waterfront planning & implementation
Mooring options
Inner dolphin section & plan views
12, Panuku work programme, update
13, Onehunga, high level project
14, Draft government policy statement on land transport, submission
15, Northern corridor improvements project, political reference group & delegations
16, Draft Whenuapai plan change, approval & public engagement
17, Development of plan change to unitary plan (operative in part) and the district plan (Hauraki Gulf islands section), sites of significance to mana whenua
18, Unitary plan (operative in part), assessment of errors to produce the first 2 administrative plan changes
19, Unitary plan (operative in part), future plan changes and processing of private plan changes
20, Summary of planning committee information memos & briefings
Attachment A, 2 March, Staff submission on the Telecommunication Act Review: post-2020 regulatory framework for fixed line services
Attachment B, 22 March, East-West Link, submission
Attachment C, 22 March, northern corridor improvements project, submission
Attachment D, 20 March, structure plans, memo to planning committee members
Attachment E, 15 February, future urban land supply strategy, refresh workshop documents
Attachment F, 1 March, city rail link, briefing documents
Attachment G, 1 March, Auckland Plan refresh, workshop 3 documents
Attachment H, 7 March, city-airport briefing documents (not included)
Attachment I, 10 March, central city waterfront, planning workshop documents
Attachment J, 15 March, Auckland Plan refresh, workshop 4 documents

Related story today:
Start with a figure you don’t know, then plan accordingly….

Attribution: Committee meeting, council staff report.

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