Council digs in on intensification

Auckland Council just won’t give in.

It’s desperate times at Auckland Council. They are desperate because the Compact City dream they have held for years is on the brink of being lost to greenfield expansion.

Unitary Plan submitters have Council on the ropes. The evidence prepared by Council to support the Compact City is rubbish and the Independent Hearings Panel well and truly buys the truth that there is no way Council’s dreams can turn to reality.

The only option is to release more land in greenfield locations. But no, Council is so desperate they would rather zone most of the city for high rise apartments than concede defeat.

The poshest and poorest neighbourhoods in Auckland will be rezoned for more housing and apartments, confidential documents and maps obtained by the Heraldshow.

Some of Takapuna’s most prized streets could lose single house, tree and garden status. Housing density along Lake Rd, one of the city’s worst bottlenecks, will more than double in places.

Many of South Auckland’s poorest suburbs are also set to house more people. Intensive terraced housing and apartment blocks of four to six storeys are planned for Otara, Mangere, Manurewa and Clendon Park.

The full extent of the changes, marked “confidential” and “legally privileged”, were discussed by councillors on the Unitary Plan committee behind closed doors on Tuesday.

They represent the council’s latest position on the Unitary Plan for the North Shore, Rodney, the eastern suburbs of Howick and Pakuranga and South Auckland.

The Herald has not seen the zoning changes for the central isthmus and West Auckland, approved by the Unitary Plan committee on November 10.

This week, the Herald reported senior council planner John Duguid saying tens of thousands of suburban homes in Auckland would probably be rezoned from the single house zone for multiple townhouses and apartments.

Mr Duguid said the rezoning was part of the Unitary Plan process and the council would not notify individual homeowners of the changes. Maps showing the zone changes will be made public next month.

Communities are going to spew about this.

Expect pitch fork burnings at the stake of local politicians. Starting with Penny Hulse who oversees the Unitary Plan process.

Penny Hulse is culprit #1.

We all know there are a whole lot of Council planners wreaking havoc with Auckland via the Unitary Plan. These scoundrels don’t care if developers wreck neighbourhoods with crappy apartment buildings. It’s their way or the highway.

Today’s news that Auckland Council have decided to zone nearly all of Auckland for intensification so that they don’t lose the compact city fight is proof the Council doesn’t give a toss.

But let’s not forget for one second that the Councillor who is in charge of the Unitary Plan rule book is none other then ‘Pinochet Penny’.

Old Penny Hulse is as thick as thieves with the officers. She oversees all their work. She is the single Councillor who is in charge of the Unitary Plan process. She reads and approves everything.

So with Council rezoning most of Auckland for high rise apartments – let’s not forget whose fingerprints are on this.

Penny Hulse.

I suspect she is going to have a very hard time getting re-elected on this. The local neighbourhood lynch mobs will be very big. You don’t piss on the communities of Auckland and get away with it.

When communities fight back, they usually engage, tip in money and look for experts who can  get rid of the pollies. Guys like Simon Lusk. And it wouldn’t take much.

Penny should do the same as Len, and quit now.


– NZ Herald

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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.  And 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 that takes no prisoners.

He is fearless in his pursuit of a story.

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