Auckland Housing Accord 'continues to license urban sprawl'

Youth organisation, Generation Zero, is appalled at the next stage of the Auckland Housing Accord, released today, as it is once again focussed on urban sprawl. The fourth tranche of 41 Special Housing Areas (SHAs), allows for 8000 dwellings, nearly two thirds of which are in the form of greenfield development.

Spokesperson for Generation Zero, Dr Sudhvir Singh; "These SHAs continue to be a missed opportunity. While the Accord allows for some brownfield development, it fast tracks a large amount of urban sprawl, which will result in more carbon pollution and traffic congestion for all Aucklanders. This is despite an urgent need for more housing choices in Auckland, particularly smaller well-designed housing close to public transport."

Over the next 30 years, couples without children and one person households will be the most rapidly growing household type in Auckland. Dr Singh; "The SHAs should reflect Auckland’s changing trends, particularly the transition to smaller households. The current approach will continue to make Auckland more unaffordable by limiting the ability for Aucklanders to live close to job opportunities."

The government is also failing to act to ensure developments are served well by public transport, therefore new residents will be forced to join the existing traffic queues, making congestion in Auckland even worse. The fourth tranche fast tracks 4000 dwellings outside Westgate , in addition to the 8950 dwellings already fast tracked in the North-West. Dr Singh; "Instead of just widening the North-Western motorway, Council and Government needs to prioritise the North-Western busway to give people in the North-West transport choices."

"Young people are calling for density done well, enabling more housing choices in areas where we work and study. Instead of focussing on urban sprawl, the Government and Council should have focussed on quality medium-density developments close to public transport which would have helped Auckland overcome the major challenges of housing affordability, traffic congestion and climate change" says Dr Singh.

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  • commented 2014-11-11 16:03:14 +1300
    Unfortunately the people who live in urban centres in Auckland do not want to lose the “village” environment they think would be spoiled by medium density options. An example of this was the reaction to the Proposed Plan for Auckland in areas on the north shore where increased density was proposed. Although many cities in the world can demonstrate a vibrant and caring village culture in areas of high density housing, it is unfamiliar to many New Zealanders. If we do not go up we will have to go out.