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Scope of housing land inquiry falls short

Scope of housing land inquiry falls short

The lack of land for business development in the Auckland region needs investigating alongside problems with the supply of land for housing, says the Employers and Manufacturers Association (Northern) Inc or EMA.

EMA chief executive Kim Campbell says, “We welcome the inquiry into how councils make land available for housing, including providing infrastructure, which is to be conducted by the Productivity Commission.

“But we are surprised the inquiry is not also specifically investigating the chronic shortage of land available now and in the future, for building shops, doctors’ rooms, warehouses, manufacturing plants or any other type of business.

“Auckland’s Draft Unitary Plan (the 30-year plan for the region) allocates far too little land for future business development – in total and in the variety of plot sizes.

“In the past 15 years an average of 96ha of land was available for business development, and we are short; but in the next 30 years only 109ha per year is available – not enough for a growing, exporting city region. One large warehouse could take up 2ha, for example.

“Alongside the availability or allocation of land are costly delays and confusion around applying for consents to build.

“These matters need to be investigated at the same time as land for housing.

“Housing cannot be isolated from business development for a number of reasons.

“First, the location of housing in relation to the location of workplaces is critical so people can get jobs and access facilities close to home for their own convenience.

“Also we do not want to further congest motorways and other roads by poor planning around the co-location of work and home.”

ends

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