Archive | Growth strategies

Make them think, make them think

Donald Trump has succeeded where decades of politicians in the US have failed: By his full-on approach, he has forced people – especially opponents – to think about what future they want & how they want to get there, or how they might get there once the pathway has been redrawn.

An example was in a CityLab article a week ago, recognising a populist election victory and taking that forward to an examination of economic & urban issues.

“Will your city go into triage mode, double down on progressive policies, or flex its financial muscle in 2017?” the CityLab article, The 5 kinds of cities we’ll see in the populist era, asked. It went on to list 5 types of city:

Besieged: cuts in funding and shifts in national regulations
Opposition to anti-trade & anti-immigrant efforts, weakening healthcare security, safeguards for the climate and consumer protections
Progressive: acting independently of national government, across the US & Europe, cities are leading efforts to lower carbon emissions, boost energy efficiency and accelerate the transition to renewable energies and, in Europe, leading efforts to integrate Syrian & other refugees through imaginative housing, education & skills-building initiatives
Prosperous: “Economic restructuring and the demographic preferences of talented workers have revalued proximity, density, diversity & vitality – in a word, ‘cityness’ – over dispersion & decentralisation”
Networked: “The power of cities lies in the fact that they are not governments, but rather networks of public, private, civic, university & community institutions. Governments can be hijacked by partisanship; networks, by contrast, reward pragmatic action”.

The writers said cities would get smarter about how to use their market position for fiscal purposes: “Copenhagen and Lyon, France, are using the value of public assets including land & buildings – and new publicly owned, privately managed corporations – to invest at scale in infrastructure and spur the large regeneration of harbours & urban districts. Like other urban innovations, we should expect these new models of city governance & finance to spread fast.”

Institutions have unused role in raising cities’ economies

In another article in October 2015, The new grand bargain between cities & anchor institutions, CityLab cofounder & editor-at-large Richard Florida wrote that “anchor institutions spur economic growth & innovation, but are still lacking co-operation with cities themselves”.

We’ve seen that in Auckland, where a decade of institutional development has been mostly inward-focused. Auckland University tried, 10-15 years ago, to combine a “research innovation campus” beside its Tamaki sportsfields with public & private sector research & development facilities.

The obstacles were chiefly about planning. The notion that an education facility, other public institutions & private sector businesses should embark on joint ventures and leverage off one another’s efforts – exciting & highly innovative, I thought – was incidental.

The Tamaki campus has been sold, for housing, and students are heading back into town, where the university’s new Khyber Pass campus is again inward-looking. The relationship between gown & town will again be incidental.

In the US, Mr Florida wrote: “For most of the 20th century, large companies like General Motors and Ford, IBM and General Electric, US Steel and Procter & Gamble were the veritable suns that powered both the US economy & the scores of economies that comprised it. Cities, in turn, measured their strength by how many of these headquarters & manufacturing plants they held….

“The driving force in our economy has shifted from those behemoths to clusters of companies, talent & support industries. Those clusters do not just emerge out of thin air; more often than not they revolve around large anchor institutions – mainly research universities, colleges, medical centres & other creative or knowledge-based institutions – that help shape & structure urban economies.”

University examples

A report by the Urban Institute & New York University’s Wagner School, released through the National Resource Network, identifies ways to align cities & local anchors around shared interests and largescale economic & community development.

Examples of changing approaches are Tulane University in New Orleans, collaboration in Cleveland, the urban lab model in Chicago and Oregon University’s sustainable cities initiative.

In New Orleans, university president Scott Cowen changed his view that the university was in but not of the city after Hurricane Katrina in 2005, becoming a champion for the whole city. That included helping revive an historically black college, Dillard, that the report said would have closed, and creating a public service requirement for all undergraduates – a first for the US – “that led to after-school tutoring, house rebuilding and the creation of public gardens in some of the poorest neighbourhoods most severely damaged by the hurricane”.

The report writers saw even greater collaboration in Cleveland, where the heads of the Cleveland Clinic, Case Western Reserve University, University Hospitals and the Cleveland Foundation joined city hall leaders to broadly chart a redevelopment plan for the 7 low-income neighbourhoods surrounding the University Circle district.

The future incorporates major redevelopment mixed with a local home-buying programme, co-operative business ventures tied to the anchor institutions and a largescale workforce programme.

Last March, Chicago University expand its urban lab model that identifies promising city programmes and rigorously tests to see which are worth expanding.

In Eugene, Oregon University identifies a pressing challenge and, through its sustainable cities initiative, matches up to 30 courses in many disciplines over an academic year, resulting in faculty & students acting as consultants working against a semester-based clock to solve a public problem.

CityLab, 12 January 2017: The 5 kinds of cities we’ll see in the populist era
Travel & Leisure: Copenhagen’s waterfront development
CNN Style, 9 July 2015: France’s vision of a utopian future comes to life in Lyon
Richard Florida in CityLab, 5 October 2015: The new grand bargain between cities & anchor institutions
Urban Institute, 29 September 2015: Striking a local (grand) bargain
National Resource Network, 29 September 2015: Grand bargain report
Report pdf: Striking a (local) grand bargain

Earlier stories:
31 July 2005: Tamaki campus plan change approved
18 November 2002: Tamaki campus expansion to benefit Glen Innes & Panmure

Attribution: CityLab, Travel & Leisure, CNN, Urban Institute, National Resource Network.

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Institute suggests competing urban development authorities

Property Institute chief executive Ashley Church has asked the Government to consider setting up multiple urban development authorities in Auckland rather than the single authority which Prime Minister John Key floated last week.

The single agency would oversee major building projects, buy building sites, masterplan large residential developments and partner with private sector groups to deliver them. The Productivity Commission proposed the idea last year.

However, Mr Church said competition & private investment were the keys to fast-tracking the development of new housing projects in Auckland, and yesterday he encouraged the Government to consider a commercially focused multiple-agency approach along the lines of the energy company reforms of the 1990s.

“Most of the focus of those reforms was on price competition – but we forget that an equally important aspect of them was a need to rapidly find new ways to generate energy and avoid ‘brown-outs’. In that regard the creation of Mighty River Power, Genesis & Meridian was a huge success and solved a problem that was every bit as serious as the Auckland housing crisis, at the time.”

Mr Church said the Government should take the same approach to housing by establishing a series of competing urban development authorities – possibly domiciled in different parts of Auckland but with free rein to operate throughout the city. He said they could be Crown-owned entities, council controlled organisations or a combination of both.

Mr Church said the creation of the super-city provided a stark example of why a single authority wasn’t the solution for Auckland: “If the creation of a single authority was the answer to the housing problem, Auckland would now be well on the way to solving its housing issues.”

Instead, Mr Church said it hadn’t gone unnoticed that this property boom – the first since the creation of the super-city – was taking much longer to resolve than any previous boom since at least the early 1970s.

“To be fair – that’s not all the fault of the Auckland Council. It’s also the result of strong migration & a strong economy. But I don’t think anyone gets the sense that Auckland Council ‘has matters under control’ – so the last thing the city needs is a new ’Soviet-style’ central planning agency.”

Mr Church said it was ironic that the multi-city structure of Auckland before the super-city was created would have been much better equipped to handle the current housing problem: “Under the old structure, cities competed with each other for residential development & investment – so, by now, you would have expected to have seen areas throughout the isthmus opened up for commercial & residential development in a way which would also have encouraged private investment at a local level.”

Attribution: Institute release.

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Infrastructure council seeks rethink to improve transport & intensification

The NZ Council for Infrastructure Development issued a report yesterday calling for “a major rethink on transport & urban intensification”.

It outlined a dismal state of affairs, took no account of many imminent changes, spoke of gridlock as a future danger rather than an existing state of affairs, and made no mention of one of the biggest factors in that congestion, corporate parking.

In short, it wasn’t an advance.

One of the problems for anyone trying to promote ideas on land use or transport at the moment is that the independent panel that’s been hearing submissions on the proposed Auckland unitary plan is due to deliver its recommendations to Auckland Council on 22 July, and the council will then work through those recommendations before delivering its own decisions about 6 weeks later.

That unitary plan is intended to bring consistency out of the many regulations of the previous 7 territorial councils & one regional council which were replaced by the super-city Auckland Council in 2010.

In addition, it will contain new zoning rules & a recommendation on the urban boundary.

On top of changes coming through the unitary plan, Auckland Council & the Government have entered a one-year venture called Atap (Auckland transport alignment project) to identify a preferred approach for developing Auckland’s transport system over the next 30 years.

I was sceptical about its foundation report, issued in February, but since then I’ve heard positive vibes about the project. As I wrote in February, “The foundation report notes various problems around the region and notes that ‘something will have to be done’ to improve them. This report, not the next one, ought to have worked out very quickly what the problems are, and should have moved on to the next step: What alternatives for improvement should the focus be on?”

There are other public sector initiatives which will influence access, jobs & residential development, including council organisation Panuku Auckland Development’s focus on urban regeneration, for which it’s chose its first targets.

The Council for Infrastructure Development’s release & presentation yesterday came along as if it hadn’t made submissions to the unitary plan hearings and wasn’t aware of the many other strands of action occurring alongside the transport alignment project.

“Auckland must urgently revise transport priorities & the unitary plan to better align where people live, work and how they move around, otherwise gridlock will bring the city to a halt,” the infrastructure lobby group said.

“We launched the study of Auckland’s transport challenge last year to provide independent input into the transport alignment project. The analysis is also central to NZCID’s submission on the proposed Auckland unitary plan….

“A significant part of the [congestion] problem is that the proposed unitary plan & special housing areas allow urban infill & development which cannot be economically served by transport and don’t allow sufficient density adjacent to rail & busway stations.

“This forces car dependency and makes congestion much worse than it needs to be. To decongest Auckland and improve liveability the [NZCID] report recommends that we must:

  • Substantively revise land use provisions as set out in the Auckland and Unitary plans to target intensification around public transport and sequence growth to match transport availability
  • Loosen residential development and height restrictions in areas with quality public transport access and strengthen restrictions in areas without it
  • Enable satellite city development at scale beside rail with a focus on the Pukekohe to Manukau corridor
  • Develop mixed use “live, walk and work” communities
  • Improve the frequency and convenience of public transport services to major centres of employment, education and entertainment
  • Vastly increase park and ride facilities and provide express bus services across the public transport network
  • Deliver new capacity across the road network with a focus on fixing traffic pinch points and rigorously evaluate all options, including an eastern-aligned harbour crossing connecting to an eastern corridor
  • Implement road pricing to increase network capacity, fund ongoing improvement and accommodate electric vehicles
  • Promote teleworking and work from home initiatives leveraging digital connectivity
  • Invest in leading edge intelligent traffic management systems
  • Embrace and leverage new car technology wherever possible, but recognise that it does not yet provide a silver bullet solution to Auckland’s transport issues
  • Ensure land use and transport policy is adaptive to technological and other changes as and when they become clear.

The infrastructure council’s chief executive, Stephen Selwood, said: “Auckland can have a road system which moves and a reliable, high quality public transport network which gets people to work on time. But to achieve that outcome we need to sort out the unitary plan to target high amenity intensification around public transport, increase motorway & arterial network capacity, leverage new technology to the max and price the network to manage demand & fund new investment.”

Links to the infrastructure council’s report, Transport solutions for a growing city, and 10-minute gridlock video:


Earlier stories:
17 April 2016: Thomas unveils multipronged shakeup plan for Auckland transport policy
15 April 2016: On the road to better council thinking on housing, on transport
9 March 2016: Takapuna & Northcote first up for revitalisation
23 February 2016: Transport alignment starts off-track
6 December 2015: How Panuku proposes to lead transformation of Auckland

Attribution: NZCID presentation, release.

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Housing summit speaker says law reform vital

A lead speaker at the Property Council’s residential development summit in Auckland tomorrow says inconsistent & often impractical regulations are an unnecessary burden for the industry.

Lawyer Sue Simons, a partner at BerrySimons, says: “We need robust legislative reform of the Resource Management Act, the Local Government Act & the Land Transport Management Act to alleviate burdensome regulations and meet growth-fuelled future housing & infrastructure challenges.

“Auckland is currently experiencing unabated housing shortages & escalating house prices in a city where infrastructure development has been neglected for decades. We need a dynamic legislative & regulatory environment to meet these mounting challenges.

“The property development industry also needs greater certainty surrounding Auckland Council’s proposed unitary plan & land supply strategies, as well as the future of the special housing areas legislation. As an industry, we need the confidence & certainty from central & local government.”

Property Council chief executive Connal Townsend said yesterday so many critical questions arose in the process of resolving Auckland’s housing problem: “How do we fund infrastructure? How do we address zoning restrictions that deter development? How do we better align transport infrastructure planning with land planning? How do we ensure infrastructure complements residential development and not vice versa?

“We need integrated local & national policies that account for all of these issues, to really make a difference when addressing the shortage that has seen our house prices skyrocket year after year.”

Attribution: Property Council release.

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“That colour house is not available, sir”

What kind of home would you like? “I’d like a house at least 40km from my job, inadequate public transport so I have to sit in traffic an hour each way. It can be near the sea but I don’t want to be able to see the water. It will be far more expensive than the many old places on big sections with sea views. Ours will be a big house on a small section, so it will have stairs.”

That’s not quite how the latest study on what kind of housing we’d like was summed up, but it is the way we’re headed if big changes aren’t made to housing stock, and the use of existing stock.

The study, The housing we’d choose, was headed by senior researcher Alison Reid, of the council’s research & evaluation unit (RIMU). Report authors were Market Economics Ltd analysts Rodney Yeoman & Greg Akehurst.

The study is in 3 stages, the first 2 completed. Stage 1, the primary research, identified factors & attributes people considered most important, and priorities in decision-making in housing choices.

Stage 2, choice research & modelling, involved development of a ‘trade-off model’ that placed real-world constraints on people’s housing preferences. In stage 3, the researchers will assess housing stock & market factors.

The research began with 6 focus groups and the first survey was completed by 1437 respondents. In stage 2, 1096 respondents started but only 760 completed the survey. The researchers noted an over-representation of people 40-plus.

The 3 key findings were:

Attributes – overall, property & local environment features were more important than dwelling features, convenience or local facilities

Choices – people would choose different housing types than currently exist

Resistance – there is, however, great resistance to apartment living.

The notion behind the studies

The notion behind this & similar Australian studies is that you can’t just keep extending cities further & further from the centre in a vast suburbia of standalone homes.

That means more intensive development – smaller sections, apartment buildings, townhouses for a start, and should mean development above malls, more intensive commercial & light industrial development, better mixes of retail, business & housing.

It should also mean a rewrite of the existing housing map so better use is made of many old suburbs – apartments in typically standalone neighbourhoods, a range of apartment sizes that will enable families to live in that style of housing, revised section boundaries, more nuanced public transport.

Ironically, while the study is supposed to be about the future, one of Auckland’s biggest growth areas at the moment, the Hibiscus Coast, didn’t make it into the 8 sectors of the survey, which stopped at the top of the North Shore.

It shouldn’t take a stretch of the imagination, or too many studies, to figure that more intensive development on outlier ridges would enable far more people to live in improved circumstances – provided services such as transport to jobs & amenities, a walk to the shops, decentralised jobs, are available.

Unfortunately, Auckland has never built up a tradition of apartment living, many of those built in recent decades were a bad advertisement for the sector, and it’s therefore not surprising that resistance to that kind of living has grown.

Big growth area ignored

The report Auckland Council released today has been a long time coming and still doesn’t do justice to the requirement for any city aiming to be the world’s most liveable. [Note: I haven’t read the whole report yet, but conclusions in it tell me it hasn’t made the grade.]

It’s described in council correspondence as “comprehensive & unique”. Given that it’s about the future but avoids the largest area of current housing development in the region, the Hibiscus Coast, and carries the same title as Australian surveys done in 2011 & 2013, neither adjective above is fitting.

But it is a piece of the jigsaw that needed to be written. What’s needed now is bolder work on how to make a more tightly populated city a more enjoyable place. Amenity & privacy are the keys: amenity for leisure activities close to home, privacy so you can escape to your cubby hole. For apartments, that means more than one room (and the toilet/bathroom doesn’t count), and it also means a balcony to give the outdoors feeling to make up for reduced indoor space.

Mindset change must come first

The authors of this study suggested the next logical step would be “to outline barriers & constraints to the provision of a range of housing types across Auckland. This will provide insight into the housing development process as it plays out across Auckland, the role of legislation, housing cycles, investment & people flows and the manner in which they currently interact to deliver housing to Aucklanders, old & new”.

They wrote: “Compared to the cities under investigation in Australian studies, Auckland’s history is predominantly one of developing standalone dwellings. We have a way to go to provide a range of accommodation options for households that match current & likely-to-change future requirements.”

However, one quote tells you a mindset change has to be the first step – a mindset change that has been discussed but poorly acted on in Auckland for more than a decade. That quote, on resistance: “The kiwi dream is typically that you have land & space for the kids to run around, not so much apartments. I do understand that this is what Auckland needs to do – hence why we are leaving Auckland, we do not wish to live in condensed housing.”

Australia established the study model

The identically named study done for Perth by the West Australian state government, released in May 2013, noted: “People’s strong preference is to live in a separate house. However, many have indicated that they will trade off to denser forms of housing in the right set of circumstances. Price is one of the most important drivers of these decisions.”

The Perth study followed one done in 2011 by the Melbourne-based Grattan Institute think tank in its cities programme, where the same title appears to have been first used.

The Grattan Institute noted: “If people say they want different types of housing, why aren’t they being built? The answers are largely to be found in the incentives facing residential developers.

“Through interviews with developers, banks, builders, councils & others, along with our own analysis, we discovered a range of reasons why some housing types are not being built where people say they would like to live. These include financing practices, planning & land issues and material & labour costs. If we are serious about shaping our cities in the directions residents say they want to see, the incentives facing developers would have to change.”

Auckland Council will use the findings in its report in evidence for the unitary plan hearings on residential land use and to inform the debate on Auckland’s housing supply needs.

What it ought to be doing is examining more closely the issues the Grattan Institute identified 4 years ago, such as the incentives to build a certain type of stock.

That brings me back to the heading at the top of this story: I chatted briefly this week to a senior council employee, told him I loved the purple shoes. Most of us want to fit in, but we also want to be different. In housing, it’s well past time for that to happen.

Links: Auckland study 2015, The housing we’d choose
Perth study 2013, The housing we’d choose
Perth study summary
Grattan Institute 2011 study, The housing we’d choose

Attribution: Study, Australian studies, council release.

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Helsinki puts rail-linked intensification plan out for public comment

Helsinki in Finland has a less ambitious population growth estimate than Auckland, but is far more ambitious in changing the central city to manage that growth.

The city of 860,000 residents expects to grow by 250,000 over the next 35 years.

By comparison, Auckland’s growth estimate is a million more people in the region over 30 years (and we’re into year 4), to 2.5 million. The estimates for the city centre are a population of upwards of 45,000 by 2032, and a working population of 128-140,000 by then.

New urban areas would be developed on motorway-like channels to the city centre by turning the motorways into city boulevards inside Ring Road I.

The city master plan draft proposes new construction for the Malmi Airport area, for rail transport hubs and for the vicinity of major transport stations. Malmi, Itäkeskus, Herttoniemi & Kannelmäki would become satellite centres offering housing & jobs within an easy walk.

Public transport networks would be expanded, especially rail, including cross-city lines.

The city master plan map doesn’t have accurate boundaries for development but shows the emphases of development in 1ha squares, each accompanied by a definition of the area’s main use.

The plan no longer divides areas by the type of housing – development would be steered by volumes that determine the projected level of development.

The Helsinki draft plan will be displayed for public review from 7 January-28 February, the city planning committee will review the draft & comments late this year, and the city board & council will review it next year, when it will have an implementation plan presenting the order & timetable of the next detailed plan process.


The plan promotes removal of cars, but turning motorways into multi-modal boulevards (pictured) – the same wide expanse of lanes, but with transit, cycle lanes, footpaths and still some car & truck lanes – would remain a fearsome obstacle for anyone trying to cross.

I couldn’t find a page explaining how those obstacles would be overcome. For that part of change, Auckland may well move ahead in the provision of offroad routes.

Image above: One of the proposed Helsinki boulevards.

Links: City plan draft shows how Helsinki is envisioned to grow
Helsinki city plan pages
Plan materials & images
Fast Company, In 2050 you might want to be living in Helsinki

Attribution: Helsinki planning pages, Fast Company.

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Putting density in its proper place

Published 26 May 2010

Melbourne transport planning academic Paul Mees wrote a paper last year, How dense are we? and followed it up in December with a book expanding on the subject, Transport for suburbia: Beyond the automobile age.


I ran into the paper (a short pdf file) as I was looking through various land-use bits & pieces today, and thought it worth adding to this website’s pages as urban development & transport issues are bound to heat up as we approach local government amalgamation in Auckland.


The key point in the density paper is that a lot of planning – over decades, and internationally – has been based on wrong urban density assumptions. The comparison doesn’t include Auckland, but Auckland is mentioned in the paper. Below is the abstract, under the paper’s full title, How dense are we? Another look at urban density & transport patterns in Australia, Canada & the US:


“For at least 2 decades, urban policy in Australia has been based on the belief that high levels of car use and poor public transport are mainly the result of low urban densities. There has been considerable debate about the evidence on which these policies are based, but until recently there has been no common data-set that allows densities & transport patterns to be compared on a consistent & rigorous basis.


“As a result of recent changes to data collection & publication systems by the Australian, Canadian & US national census agencies, it is now possible to compare urban densities & transport mode shares (for the journey to work) across the 3 countries’ urban areas on a consistent basis. This paper presents the results of this comparison.


“Australian cities have similar densities to those of Canadian cities & the more densely populated US cities. There are variations in density among cities, but these show little or no relationship to transport modes share, which seems more closely related to different transport policies. These findings are very different from those on which current urban policies are based, and suggest the need for a radical rethinking of those policies.”


Dr Mees is a lecturer in social science & planning at RMIT University’s School of Global Studies, Melbourne.


Link: Paper, How dense are we?


Want to comment? Go to the forum.


Attribution: Mees paper, story written by Bob Dey for the Bob Dey Property Report.

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New plan stamps urban footprint on South-east Queensland

Published 10 August 2009

South-east Queensland is entering the same planning realm as Auckland – with its version of a metropolitan urban limit, known as the Urban Footprint, imposed – but also with designated expansion zones in place.


The plan & its regulatory provisions were released in December 2008, consultation ran until 1 May and the plan & provisions were released on 28 July. The next formal review is scheduled for 2014.


The South-east Queensland regional plan covers 11 council areas from the Sunshine Coast down to the Gold Coast and inland as far as Toowoomba, including 3 inland areas of Somerset, Lockyer Valley & Scenic Rim.


Brisbane, at the centre of the region, is 70km north-west of the Gold Coast and Toowoomba is just over 100km west of Brisbane.


The regional plan for 2009-31 replaces one produced in 2005 and has been compiled by the state government’s infrastructure & planning department.


The planners have assessed a mid-range population growth of 1.6 million people, to 4.4 million, and a need for 754,000 new homes at a rate of 2.1 residents/dwelling and an overall land takeup of 15 homes/ha, which equates to a gross land area of 666m²/home.


Most of that takeup is intended to be in existing urban areas, with provision to expand into what are known as identified growth areas within the regional landscape & rural production area.


Chapter 8, on compact settlement, notes that, “to promote a balanced settlement pattern and more compact development within the Urban Footprint, the SEQ regional plan:


sets targets by local government area to contribute to an increase in the proportion of additional dwellings constructed through new development or redevelopment in existing urban areas to 50% by 2031requires new residential developments in development areas to achieve a minimum net dwelling yield of 15 dwellings/ha (with the potential for higher densities as appropriate through the planning process). This will help to provide a mix of dwelling types to match the community’s changing needs, household sizes & structuresrequires higher density residential development to be focused within & around regional activity centres, & public transport nodes & corridors. This will improve access to existing & planned facilities & servicesrestricts further land allocation for rural residential development and promotes a more sustainable use of existing rural residential areas.”


88% of growth in Brisbane would be infill & redevelopment, on the Gold Coast it would be 68% and on the Sunshine Coast it would be 38%. Over in Toowoomba infill would be required for only 13% of new homes. Across the existing mix of urban & rural areas, infill (medium & high density) & standalone homes would be balanced out at 50% of supply each.


The plan’s general principles on containing development are:

The Urban Footprint is a tool for managing, rather than simply accommodating, regional growthThe Urban Footprint sets the context to achieving a pattern of development that is consistent with the strategic directions & regional policies set out in the regional planThe Urban Footprint should accommodate the region’s urban development needs to 2031 based on population, housing & employment projections, and reasonable assumptions about future growthOpportunities for increasing the capacity of the existing Urban Footprint should be given higher priority than expanding the Urban Footprint, and it should only be expanded if there is insufficient capacity to accommodate the planned distribution of regional growthEconomic opportunities in rural areas should be accommodated where there is adequate or planned infrastructure to service the development and where the development will not prejudice orderly planning of the localityMinor adjustments should be made to include land in or remove land from the Urban Footprint to reflect changed circumstances including new or better information, to correct existing anomalies or to recognise constraints.


The plan says the boundary of the Urban Footprint should be:


cadastrally based or otherwise clearly defined, preferably using a major feature such as a road or stream to provide a clear boundary & buffer between urban & non-urban land usesconsistent with existing planning scheme zonings or development commitments, andcontinuous around each discrete urban area.


Website: South-east Queensland regional plan


Want to comment? Go to the forum.


Attribution: Government website, story written by Bob Dey for the Bob Dey Property Report.

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Auckland City Council progress on growth strategy projects in the final quarter of 2006:

Published 14 January 2007



Plan change 59 (residential 8 zone in Panmure) to be made operative shortly,

following the withdrawal of the appeal by the Auckland Regional Council.

A decision has been issued on plan change 142, which applies to the Panmure town centre and encourages revitalisation, mixed-use development & better urban design. 2 appeals have been received against this decision and negotiations have been started.

Glen Innes

A decision on this plan change was released on 28 September. The appeal period has closed and 2 appeals received.

Talbot Park precinct, Housing NZ Corp development is ongoing. All the new homes were expected to be completed by December and the new parks by early 2007.

Mt Wellington

Mt Wellington Quarry, a section 293 application was lodged in July to allow further public notification and the submission period closed in September. This relates to the area of the quarry land not covered by the partial consent order.


The Newmarket‘s future framework has been adopted and a draft action plan to implement initiatives in the strategy produced. A plan change based on elements in the structure plan is being prepared. Streetscape upgrades are in the detailed planning phase.


The Avondale’s future framework has been adopted and an action plan finalised. A character & heritage assessment for the Roberton Rd area is underway and a plan change for intensification of the residential area is expected in early 2007.


A discussion document was to be released at the end of November.

Mt Albert

The council has recently begun a building stronger communities project in Mt Albert.

Work is also beginning on the Mt Albert liveable community plan and it’s anticipated that community visioning on this project will start in early 2007.


Community visioning is under way in Otahuhu and an options open day was planned for early December. An urban design presentation was also scheduled for late November.

Sylvia Park surrounds

Community open days were held throughout November. Visioning with the community was scheduled to start in December, continuing into the New Year.

Central area

A cbd strategy has been released. Plan change 1 has been notified for the Victoria Quarter and plan change 2 has been notified to address amenity & urban design issues, such as minimum sizes for apartments in the central area. Submissions have closed on both of these plan changes, however hearings are yet to be scheduled.

Hauraki Gulf Islands

The proposed Hauraki Gulf Islands district plan was notified on 17 September. The submission period closed on 11 December, but the council agreed on 14 December to allow late submissions until the end of January.

NZ urban design protocol & mayoral task force programme

Work is proceeding to implement the task force programme, with significant progress on several key actions, including:

launching of the mayoral “conversations on urban design” to raise awareness of urban design and discuss critical issues with expert speakers
co-sponsorship with the Property Council of an urban design award. The winner was Jasmax, for the AUT business school building
plan changes to increase the importance of urban design assessments in new development, with more significant developments under review by the urban design panel
an urban design concept was prepared for Wynyard Pt, consultation has been completed and a plan change is being drafted
the cbd urban design framework is out for consultation
Vision for Matiatia good ideas search, judging of the detailed designs submitted by the 5 finalists is under way
update of citywide urban design strategy is under way.

Infrastructure progress

Work continues on the integrated catchment management project
Work continues with ARTNL/ARTA (the Auckland Regional Transport Network & Regional Transport Authority) on station upgrades. Priority 1 stations have received funding. Detailed design work has been completed and construction begun on Panmure, Baldwin Avenue, Meadowbank & Orakei. A temporary park & ride has been completed for the Panmure station and will be opened on completion of the rail station
The council has been working with ARTA to provide a bus interchange near the new Panmure rail station and the location of this has been agreed.

Statutory plan changes

Plan change 58 (residential 8 zone) – operative
Plan change 59 (applying residential 8 zone in Panmure) – will shortly become operative
Plan change 61 (applying residential 8 & 6a zoning to Glen Innes) – decision released and 2 appeals received
Plan change 71 (mixed-use zone) – operative
Plan change 142 (applying a growth concept plan to Panmure town centre – including provisions to encourage better redevelopment, better urban design and view protection) – decision released and 2 appeals received
Plan change 153 (applying urban design criteria to multi-units in residential 6 & 7 zones) – subject to one appeal
Plan change 154 (applying urban design criteria to residential developments in business 2 & 3 zones) – operative.

Material in the related stories listed below is from the growth forum agenda, lightly edited and still presented as the council’s views.

Related stories: Consultation in March on regional sustainability framework

Auckland City Council progress on growth strategy projects in the final quarter of 2006:

Franklin District Council progress on growth strategy projects in the final quarter of 2006:

Manukau City Council progress on growth strategy projects in the final quarter of 2006:

North Shore City Council progress on growth strategy projects in the final quarter of 2006:

Papakura District Council progress on growth strategy projects in the final quarter of 2006:

Rodney District Council progress on growth strategy projects in the final quarter of 2006:

Waitakere City Council progress on growth strategy projects in the final quarter of 2006:


Want to comment? Click on The new BD Central Forum or email [email protected].


Attribution: Forum agenda, story written by Bob Dey for this website.

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Update on Auckland City growth strategy

Published 6 August 2006

The item below is derived from Auckland City Council’s latest report to the Regional Growth Forum.

Councils around the Auckland region report into the forum periodically on what’s happening in their neighbourhood – plans, strategies, sometimes proposals for zone changes or shifts of the urban limit.

Check the links at the foot of the page for details from other reports to the forum’s last meeting, on 5 July.

Avondale, the Avondale’s Future Framework has been adopted by the council and an action plan stemming from this is being finalised. Work has started on a heritage assessment for the Roberton Rd area before development of a plan change for intensification of the residential area identified in the strategy
Central area, the cbd strategy has been released. Plan changes have been notified for the Victoria Quarter and also to address amenity & urban design issues in the central area. This later plan change introduces minimum sizes for apartments in the central area. Submissions have closed and a hearing will be held in 2006
Ellerslie, targeted workshops have been held with specific groups unable to attend the previous workshop held in November, looking at community activity, residential, employment, open space & transport components as part of scenario building for the Ellerslie area in the future. Adraft plan is anticipated in August-September
Glen Innes, plan change 61, which rezones land to residential 8, a hearing was held in June and the commissioners requested further information
Glen Innes, Talbot Park precinct development ongoing, Housing NZ Corp, all the new homes are expected to be completed by December and the new parks by early 2007
Mt Wellington Quarry, request to be lodged with the Environment Court for revised plan change 7 seeking a variety of rezoning orders relating to the area of the quarry land not covered by the partial consent order (updated in story today, Further notification for Landco’s Lunn Ave plan change 7)
The Newmarket‘s Future Framework, has been adopted and a draft action plan to implement initiatives in the strategy has been produced. A plan change based on elements in the structure plan is being prepared. Streetscape upgrades are in the detailed planning phase
Mt Albert rail precinct study, further research on feasibility is being undertaken on improving access to the rail station from the Mt Albert town centre, including consideration of where to encourage mixed-use development. Following on from this work, a project to develop a liveable community plan for Mt Albert will be started
Otahuhu, the researching & scoping stage of this project has been completed and the community consultation phase is in its early stages
Panmure, plan change 59 (residential 8 zone in Panmure), the Auckland Regional Council has appealed (it wants more intensity). A decision has been issued on plan change 142, which applies to the Panmure town centre and encourages revitalisation, mixed-use development & better urban design. Negotiations have started on the 2 appeals
Sylvia Park surrounds, research & scoping for this study area is under way and a reference group has been established. Focus groups were due to start in July

Growth strategy links:


Update on growth strategies around the Auckland region

Update on Auckland City growth strategy

Update on Franklin growth strategy

Update on Manukau growth strategy

Update on North Shore City growth strategy

Update on Papakura growth strategy

Update on Rodney growth strategy

Update on Waitakere growth strategy


Want to comment? Click on The new BD Central Forum or email [email protected].


Attribution: Growth forum, story written by Bob Dey for this website.

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