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Monday, April 15, 2013

Auckland plans

To what extent are the Auckland Council's plans really their own when the larger decision on population has been made by central government already? A million people - almost all of whom will be immigrants - are expected to fit into Auckland in the next 20 or so years. Aucklanders seemingly have no say in this - all they can do is try to respond to the influx with the new unitary planning system.

No-one in Auckland has yet thought to tell Wellington that their plan to put a million extra people into Auckland is impractical, costly on many levels and probably unsustainable. Auckland's fate is being decided by Wellington bureaucrats, not Aucklanders. Wellington would never plan to turn itself into an Asian city of course, but does not blanche when advocating it for the 'Northern Gotham' of Auckland.

The NZ Herald editorial:
Auckland's newly promulgated unitary plan has entered a rocky stretch of water called local-body election year. Members of the council and local boards are going to public meetings where they are hearing predictable opposition to the building heights and residential density envisaged for the neighbourhood. A number of the council, mainly on the right, have taken fright. They have put their names to a letter to the Prime Minister asking the Government to slow the plan's progress.
They need to harden up. The people they are hearing at public meetings are probably not a cross-section of their community. They are likely to be older, established residents who dislike change.
One year would surely be ample time for objections and appeals to be heard and decisions made. Developers, builders and - most importantly - home-seekers, should not have to wait three years to know the permitted height, density and design standards for different parts of the city.
We hear constantly from the Government and the council that Auckland has to accommodate another million people within the planning period and that the rate of new house construction is falling well short of the growth in demand. An arid argument of whether that growth should be on the periphery or within existing limits matters less than the need for a decision.

It would be most likely that if the Auckland Council refused to plan for an extra million people and told Wellington to put them somewhere else (and came up with a plan to only take say half or less than a million) that the government - at least a Tory government - would sack the Council and replace them with their own commissioners in the same way they did to the Canterbury Regional Council when they refused to allocate all the water to their farmer constituents. I don't believe Auckland, or any other city for that matter, has any effective control over its own destiny when mass migration is enforced from outside. It would be a task of coping and mitigating rather than planning under the type of scenario the officials envisage.



At 19/4/13 12:31 am, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I've heard Len Brown and Penny Hulse and now Phil Twyford rabbiting on about how Auckland will have a million more people, as if it's a fait accompli! - Penny says it's because Aucklanders are having babies and people will be arriving from other parts of NZ, but it's been reported that at least 40 percent of the million will be immigrants!! Why should Aucklanders change the way they live for foreign immigrants?? When in Rome should be what happens. Let them live the way we like to live, most of us like a house, with a garden. The young may like apartments while single, but can't wait to get out when baby comes along.

It's so weird, first Penny Hulse says that we will have so many more people because Aucklanders are having so many babies, but the next minute she says that there need to be lots of smaller apartments because there will be so many childless couples. DUH? So childless couples don't like gardens and pets? Dream on lady!!

On some blogs Generation Zero are calling older people at meetings about the UP "crustys and rustys" and say they are selfish. Rather rich when it's those people who have paid for decades for all the infrastructure and services the young people use!! The older people aren't selfish! They just want a nice childhood for their grandchildren with a safe and pleasant place to play and room for pets etc. What grandparent would really want life in a little box in the sky for their grandchildren. Not many!!

Why not do what they do in Aussie - Make immigrants live in other parts of the country for at least the first 5 years. Or encourage people to set up businesses outside Auckland with tax breaks etc. Then the whole country would benefit. If half the country's population lives in Auckland on this narrow stretch of land, what will happen to the country's economy if we have a natural disaster like an eruption from Rangitoto or an earthquake. If people thought Christchurch was bad, they ain't seen nothing yet if Auckland has a Christchurch moment!

At 16/5/13 1:28 am, Anonymous Master builder said...

Under the foreign influence it is not possible to reach at a rational decision.Aucklanders should make decisions according to their own needs.Master builder

At 18/5/13 11:37 pm, Anonymous Builders in Auckland said...

What are the recent updates about that plan?Has government finished working on this plan?Builders in Auckland

At 21/6/13 4:16 pm, Anonymous builders in auckland said...

Now its upto govt. to take a mature step which is in the favor of both, younger and elders too. Elders actually don't want much change in the infrastructure in which they lived their whole life.

At 21/6/13 4:19 pm, Anonymous builders in auckland said...

Now its up to govt. and they should take a mature step which goes in the favor of both parties. And should respect the decisions of elders especially the senior citizens.


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