Two Questions Now to be asked of Council

City Building Again – and by that I mean ALL of the City (well region)

 

So much more out there than the City Centre
So much more out there than the City Centre

 

Recently I had asked the following question in my “A Question About City Building” post which was:

Auckland is “great” at “building” residential complexes but is rather “hopeless” at building job and employment complexes (commercial and industrial (not including the main City Centre)). True of false?

 

It did prompt this comment in that respective blog post:

Interesting conversational point. My personal feeling is that Drury has a massive opportunity to combine rail, motorway(including the mill road upgrade), airport and residential proximity in the future. Perhaps we could finally get it totally right…
The AMETI project & 3rd rail line are obvious indicators that East Tamaki was in no way properly planned for. In essence Auckland is playing catch up.
Likewise for Manukau City. Such a shame that the rail station isn’t closer to the main shopping centre/rainbows end. Should the Glenora station & Drury station and the southern line from Manukau get built we may get a very interesting dynamic between the Commercial Hub of Manukau, residential areas of Manurewa/Addison/Papakura/Pukekoe and the new powerhouse Industrial zone of Drury.
No rail to the airport is also proof of the lack of effective management/planning of our past.

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After some more thought and pondering another question came to mind in respect to the above question and comment.

That question being:

Is Auckland Council and the relative CCO’s outside of the City Rail Link expending too much resources into the City Centre and the Waterfront at the expense of wider Auckland?

 

That question becomes even more poignant in light of the recent situations out in West Auckland that illustrates the more ugly side of social deprivation. While the Government can do its part in alleviating social deprivation Council can do its part as well.

By Council doing its part I mean:

  • Planning regulations liberalised to allow housing to be built near employment centres and transport nodes
  • Planning regulations liberalised so commercial hubs (often the Centres) and industrial complexes can be readily established thus providing employment chances to people (employment and education are the two biggest weapons against social deprivation)
  • Quality urban design in residential areas that promote passive surveillance, neighbourhood bonding (so returning streets to the people) and easy access to passive recreational facilities (parks)
  • Quality urban design in residential areas that allow easy connections to transport nodes, Centres, and surrounding areas (hint Cul-de-sacs prevent this)
  • Getting Master Plans for the Metropolitan and Town Centres done by middle of next year and implemented soon after. These Master Plans would act as anchor points to urban renewal to the surrounding areas of Auckland. That urban renewal coupled with the other points above would go a long way in busting social deprivation

 

So a challenge I throw down challenge to Auckland Council to have both the Manukau City Centre Master Plan draft, and Henderson Metropolitan Centre Master Plan draft drawn up by the end of the year ready for consultation at the beginning of next year after the Summer Holidays.

It is time to leave the City Centre alone – it already gets enough love while suburbia is not getting a heck of a lot of that same love.