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New zoning to manage city’s expected growth

New zoning to manage city’s expected growth

The population of Auckland city is expected to increase from the current approximate 367,734 to 583,000 in 2050. The city has little vacant land for building of new homes, and the existing capacity for growth is likely to be used up by 2006-2010.

In order to plan for the future, Auckland City Council is proposing to introduce a new zone, the Residential 8 zone, into the District Plan.

The plan change objectives are: To manage future growth through more compact living in better designed residential and mixed use areas of the city. To maintain a range of housing types in order to provide for a variety of lifestyles throughout the city.

The new zone may be applied to residential land identified as within a strategic growth management area near the CBD, adjacent to existing town centres or major transport nodes to encourage use of public transport. Locations must also have adequate infrastructure and recreational opportunities. At the same time as providing for more compact lifestyles, the new zone will ensure quality urban design for all development in these areas through the resource consent process.

“This proposed new zoning is an essential step in proactively managing the city’s growth,” says Councillor Juliet Yates, chairperson, City Development Committee. “To do nothing would lead to low quality design in higher density developments, and enable haphazard urban sprawl. Our city planners have spent an enormous amount of time researching issues of growth, and of how to turn the challenges of growth into opportunities to enhance communities and revitalise old suburban centres.”

The specific locations of Residential 8 zones will be generally established, in consultation with local communities. The rezoning of Talbot Park in Glen Innes is the first proposed location for the Residential 8 zone.

A new rule within the proposed plan change will require all new residential units or external alterations or additions to existing buildings within the Residential 8 zone to under go a resource consent assessment. These resource consent applications will be assessed against specific criteria within the residential design guide, which forms part of the proposed plan change, to achieve quality urban design.

Further rules cover increasing maximum densities and heights, new height to boundary, visual privacy, daylight, acoustic privacy and parking, as well as existing maximum building coverage. These rules will allow for increased flexibility in building design while protecting the character of adjoining sites and the street.

"The Res.8 strategy is to create quality neighbourhoods and to mitigate any adverse effects which may arise from more compact development,” says Councillor Yates. “Along with such change, we must ensure that residents will enjoy the benefits of city living and being a part of a cohesive community where they have quick access to work, recreation, learning and shopping.”

Following yesterday’s City Development Committee meeting, proposed plan change No.58 will be publicly notified on 21 November 2002 in the New Zealand Herald. The submission period is open for 20 working days and closes on 19 December 2002.

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