Hearing on Thursday
Pushing for greater height limits as we intensify
The Unitary Plan Hearings for the Residential Zones are currently under way from the 14th through to the 28th of October. I am due to present on Thursday morning (22nd) as the second of three major topics I submitted on to the Proposed Auckland Unitary Plan (already presented on the Centres Zones last month and my rezoning requests are heard either in March or April next year).
The Residential Zones Objectives and Policies, and its subsequent Development Controls are going to be the most vexed and controversial of the Unitary Plan Hearings prior to the rezoning exercise next year. Of course this a given with the citizens of Auckland going to place attachment to where they live and their local communities.
The debate for the Residential Zones can be split into two distinct and opposing parts:
- Those who want to keep existing residential areas of Auckland as is often citing heritage or character
- Those seeking more liberal controls that would allow urban Auckland to adapt to the changing environment as the City continues to grow
For the most part Council has changed the provisions to the Residential Zones as seen here New Proposed Residential Zone Density and Height Limits Out #UnitaryPlan UPDATED which allow for more flexibility thus intensification in urban Auckland. However, what Council has proposed still has not slated either side of the debate as the Hearings continue if the Ockham Holdings presentation below is anything to go by:
Council through their rebuttal evidence and legal submissions have come out against my own proposals:
- Council Rebuttal Evidence on Unitary Plan Residential Zones is Out. My Concepts Ahead of Their Time Again #Unitary Plan
- 059, 060, 062 and 063 – Hrg – Auckland Council – Legal Submissions
I sent back a Memorandum of Clarification to the Council and to the Unitary Plan Hearings Panel to make it clear on the new zones and their respective height limits:
Council’s proposed highest height limit for the Terraced Housing and Apartment Zone is 15 metres or nudging five storeys. In my Residential Intensive Medium Density Zone which is one of the zones that replaces the Terraced Housing and Apartment Zone I went for 32 metres of eight storeys in height limitations. Given that particular zone would be found next to a Metropolitan or Super Metropolitan Centre (proposed) the more likely zone from my suite is the Residential Standard Medium Density Zone which 24 metres or six storeys. That said if amenity is made no worse off than the existing amenity before a 32 metre high apartment tower is to be built in a residential area then by all means seek a rezoning to the Residential Intensive Medium Density Zone.
In the end though it will be interesting to see which way the Panel leans whether it does believe in tighter restrictions to residential development in the existing urban area or whether it will be looking more towards the liberal side. We will know next year when the Panel sends its recommendations to the Council.