Council in full on reverse ferret over Unitary Plan

Policy Parrot says:

Some of the more notorious members of the property development community and legal profession have been bagging Auckland Council for sometime around the issue of intensification and the compact city model.

It started in earnest when Council undertook the Auckland Plan process and quite understandably professional peeps wanted to know where the evidence was that the city could be compacted.

In a somewhat savvy but also cunning move the Property Council convinced the Auckland Council to complete a study (FGA) which singlehandedly undermined the compact city model by casting doubt over the veracity of available land capacity.

This Parrot was highly amused when reading that report once it was available because it said what we all thought – that it was certain the land for building a compact city didn’t exist and it it demonstrated what amount of zoning change was required to meet Auckland Plan targets which – to say the least – were preposterous.

The single biggest fact put forward by the report authors against the compact model (and targets being achieved) was that the Council lacked the ‘political will’ to carry out the necessary rezoning if local communities popped a vein or two.

One assumes Council scoffed at that and ignored the advice because the targets largely remained intact and the Draft Unitary Plan was released with wide scale rezoning proposed over the whole city.

Well blow me if Councillors aren’t back tracking right now.

And what is causing that? Community opposition. 

So it appears the generals and lieutenants of the property council were right. And as predicted by them the chickens are coming home to roost for Auckland Council.

Cock – a – doodle doo.

We can blame this demise on fear and miscommunication. Typically local communities imagine horrendous doom and gloom that really has no place anywhere except in a bad hallucinogenic session with a bunch of raving lunatics from a mental asylum.

And politicians should know this. Communities always think worse than worse.

We can also blame this on politicians with no gumption and lastly we can blame the meddling know it alls. This Parrot predicted months ago that Aukland 2040 would weasel a strong arm and they bloody well did.

Whether one agrees with the Property Council goons or not they appear to be able to read the future aptly and they certainly know how communities and politicians think.

Most of this was highly predictable anyway.

One doesn’t need to be a soothsayer or a Property Council peep to know some pollies can’t handle disgruntled constituents. Life outside of politics for bored 60 year old house wives and ‘has been’ conveyancing lawyers is pretty grim.

Interestingly the only counsellor to have questioned the aspirations was old Quax from Howick. This Parrot noted that he took a lot of lots of flack from his colleagues and yet he is right and those same colleagues are now U-turning.

Perhaps the rest of that motley crew will offer Dick an apology but I doubt it.

What we know now is the compact city dream is going. The $500,000 Auckland Plan brochure is now destined for the $1million dollar shelf where all failed plans end up.

So what is this Parrot’s point?

The point is we as Aucklanders have been led on a wild goose chase and dicked about with stupid ideas put to us by stupid people that had no chance of success if you gave them 10 seconds thought.

The plan has failed.

Councillors have been led astray by their feral officers and then when put to test found savage hoards of local zombies ready to kill for suggesting it might all happen close to their own homes.

Fearful of having no job in October they all shit their pants pulled their balls up tight and retreated like the soft sell-outs we always knew they were.

Auckland deserves better. Firstly it deserves to have a pool of quality Council officers who will listen to professionals and take their advice rather than propose utopia in a bubble.

Auckland also needs quality counsellors too – paid well and with expertise and at certain times the balls to smack and sack looney officials whilst standing up to communities if they are acting the goat and being self centered banana republicans.

What we don’t need is to have shifting lines in the sand, costly plans that get thwarted and last minute retreats from councillors who want to save their own bacon.

The right people would never have come up with such a plan in the first place. They would have known it was impossible and when advised as such the would have listened to those telling them.

This Parrot doesn’t know many of those who dwell in the strategy war room of the Property Council but this Parrot says they should have been listened too because they were right. What else are they right about?

This Parrot wants to hear what they have to say. And suggests perhaps its they who should be running our city.

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As much at home writing editorials as being the subject of them, Cam has won awards, including the Canon Media Award for his work on the Len Brown/Bevan Chuang story. When he’s not creating the news, he tends to be in it, with protagonists using the courts, media and social media to deliver financial as well as death threats.

They say that news is something that someone, somewhere, wants kept quiet. Cam Slater doesn’t do quiet and, as a result, he is a polarising, controversial but highly effective journalist who takes no prisoners.

He is fearless in his pursuit of a story.

Love him or loathe him, you can’t ignore him.

To read Cam’s previous articles click on his name in blue.