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Running out of business land

Running out of business land

North Shore City's business land is running out and new homes are contributing to the problem.

A report presented to the city's strategy and finance committee shows that as at 2001, North Shore City had less than 10 years' supply of business-zoned land - not enough to support a sustainable economic future for the city.

Protecting most of the city's business-zoned land from residential development is one of several projects outlined in the council's City Blueprint Action Plan designed to meet the challenges of growth and change.

Committee chairperson, Tony Holman, says the lack of business land is a concern.

"The shortage of business land could have significant implications on our city's economy and we need to understand what this means and carefully monitor how it is used in the future.

"We need to ensure North Shore City can offer sufficient jobs for its community so that more people can work close to home and help to reduce cross-harbour traffic," Councillor Holman says.

The council will continue to encourage residential development in business zones 1-4 that are in and around town and village centres which offer a range of community and commercial facilities, and are well serviced by public transport. It will discourage residential development in areas such as industrial and office parks that do not offer these facilities.

The report identified trends across the Auckland region and compared them to North Shore City. Business land across the region is being used up too quickly but North Shore City is using its land quicker than other areas. Between 1996 and 2001, out of a possible 402 hectares, over 160 hectares of greenfield (undeveloped) business land was developed. This equates to a 40 per cent decrease in available business land which is significantly higher than the 26 per cent reduction across the Auckland region.

Councillor Holman says the council will take a precautionary approach.

"We need to look closely at what land is available and seek opportunities that will support our city's economy, and provide employment options for our community and future generations," he says.

North Shore City will look at options for more intensive development of existing business areas and will work closely with its neighbouring councils (Rodney District, Waitakere City and Auckland Regional Councils) to scope business land opportunities as part of its regional growth commitments.

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