Oram on Auckland Spatial Plan, and more

### nzstuff.co.nz Last updated 05:00 21/03/2011
Auckland at the crossroads
By Rod Oram – Sunday Star Times
OPINION: The Auckland Plan is a moment of opportunity for the super city.

On Wednesday, a great fight for the heart, soul and wellbeing of Aucklanders begins. But don’t worry. It’s not all about Auckland. If the region gets this right, the rest of the country will benefit strongly from more effective approaches to development. In one corner stands the Auckland Council led by mayor Len Brown. It will present its view of the city’s future when it delivers that day a discussion document on the Auckland Plan. The paper will look at the region in a new way. For the first time, it will bring together data, analysis and insights on the human, economic, environmental, social, cultural and other factors that make Auckland what it is today. Crucially, though, it will use this new analysis to show us options for the region’s future. It’s up to Aucklanders to consider, debate, agree and act with the new powers the region gained through the creation of the super city.

In the other corner stands the Key government, led on these Auckland issues by Rodney Hide, minister of local government. Last week, the cabinet released a set of eight papers giving its very entrenched positions on Auckland’s future. What a miserable view it was. When Hide and his ministerial colleagues think of Auckland they imagine only more of the same, warts and all. In their view, Auckland has to ooze out across the landscape in low-value, low-growth ways.
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aucklandtransportblog critiques Oram on Spatial Plan (21 Mar 2011)

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr

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Filed under Architecture, Construction, Design, Economics, Geography, Heritage, People, Politics, Project management, Site, Town planning, Urban design

One response to “Oram on Auckland Spatial Plan, and more

  1. Elizabeth

    What is the Auckland Plan?
    The Auckland Plan will be a bold 30-year vision and strategy for Auckland underpinned by the Mayor’s vision of making it the world’s most liveable city. Our plan will be a different kind of plan. It will be a plan for better co-ordination and better investment, and not just a land-use plan.
    Read more

    Auckland Unleashed [PDF] is the title of the discussion document that sets out the ideas and initial proposals that will go towards creating the draft Auckland Plan, as well as asking questions as to how the Auckland Plan can help Auckland become the best place in the world to live. It is open to anyone to provide comments, all of which will be carefully considered during the writing of the draft plan.


    ### urbandesignforum.org.nz 20/05/2011 7:30:36 p.m.
    Auckland Spatial Plan: Notes of Meeting on Spatial Plan
    By David Mead

    Below are notes from a meeting of Auckland-based Forum members held to discuss the Auckland Unleashed discussion document and to consider possible submission points. The meeting was held on Tuesday 17 May and attracted about 15 people. A submission has to be in by the end of the Month (May). The submission is likely to be fairly short and identify a range of issues.

    Omissions: base information
    The discussion document is light on the role of landscapes, green and blue networks and areas of environmental degradation in helping to shape urban form, both in terms of constraints, but also opportunities.

    Urban Form Options
    There is little analysis of different urban form options and their advantages and disadvantages. There has been a lost opportunity to advance different concepts, whether these be variations on compact city, a linear city or satellite type cities.
    Within the city limits, there is no discussion about the extent of change that may be required if the city needs to re-concentrate because of a range of wider pressures and trends. Will whole suburbs need to be rebuilt? An alternative to this is whether some brownfields redevelopment is worthwhile advancing. There are various areas of industrial land beside waterways that could be recycled into new residential neighbourhoods. New business areas would need to be found for the displaced activities, such as beside the motorway on the edge of the city, in inland areas less suitable for housing.
    At the other end of the spectrum, should there be a major push south, given the increasing transport links to Hamilton / Tauranga? Yet the best living conditions lie to the north and east, along the edges of the Hauraki Gulf. How do you make that pattern work?

    Strengthening neighbourhoods
    There is no discussion of the importance of neighbourhoods to people’s liveability – enabling a range of housing choices and types within all neighbourhoods (not just within and beside town centres), adding local workplaces, making areas more walkable, for example.
    The importance of high quality “amenity” in shaping people’s preference for more compact living options is not well expressed. People seem happy to live in a more compact housing options if it is beside the beach, a reserve or with extensive views (such as on ridgelines). These factors will tend to concentrate market-based intensive development into certain areas (in the urban area or in greenfields). For the existing urban area, density around amenity will be critical to the take up of more compact housing opportunities.

    Local responses
    While there is a need for a strategic direction, there needs to be flexibility as to how this direction gets played out at the local level, so that local conditions and context can be taken into account. This is from the point of view of not stopping change, but shaping it to fit local circumstances. Do we need 20 different ways to fit more people and houses into existing communities, not one? Local Board plans will be very important in helping to deliver the vision “on-the-ground”. The link between the big spatial plan and these plans is not clear.

    The implementation chapter is very short, yet the strategy will stand or fall on the basis of implementation.
    There has to be a convincing story of change as to how the city will adapt and modify itself in the future to a range of pressures and trends, and the role of the council in shaping this process. The public purse is not very big. Where is it going to be best to invest public resources?

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