However, concerns on Kumeu are legitimate
I was warned a couple of weeks ago this might occur in regards to the new Unitary Plan Spatial Maps (the zone applications) that people might start blowing smoke over it. Now these new maps for the Unitary Plan submitters like myself to look over are meant to be out next month for our consideration before the Topic 081 – Rezoning Hearings start in March next year.
Now before I continue I recommend reading the following post #UnitaryPlan Panel Issues Instructions for Demand and Supply Estimates across all Zones. UPDATED as it contains the memorandum from the Unitary Plan Hearings Panel and Auckland Council on supply and demand estimates stemming from the zone spatial applications (it also contains my reply which is in the hands of Council and Panel Chair Judge Kirkpatrick).
But on cue Auckland 2040 is blowing the smoke and threatening court action over the new draft zone spatial application maps which I might add are perfectly legitimate to release out to submitters.
From the NZ Herald:
Multi-storey jolt to hit tens of thousands in leafy suburbs
5:00 AM Monday Nov 23, 2015 – Bernard Orsman
Tens of thousands of homes in Auckland’s leafy residential suburbs are being rezoned for multiple townhouses and apartments and Auckland Council says homeowners will not be notified about the changes.
The central isthmus suburbs of Pt Chevalier, Epsom, Mt Eden, Mt Albert, Glendowie and St Heliers; the North Shore suburbs of Birkenhead, Glenfield and Takapuna; Whangaparaoa Peninsula, rural towns such as Kumeu and the southern suburbs of Howick and Mangere Bridge are among areas affected by the changes taking place behind closed doors.
Richard Burton, of the Auckland 2040 community group, says Aucklanders are blissfully unaware of the new rules that will change the city.
He said the Unitary Plan – a new planning rulebook for the Super City – was turning into a farce, with the council making fundamental changes without any public process.
He and Auckland 2040’s barrister, Richard Brabant, have challenged the council’s ability to change the rules, and are not ruling out legal action.
Senior council planner John Duguid said the new rules responded to submitters asking for more clarity and a targeted approach to the zone.
Developers and groups such as Housing NZ and youth lobby group Generation Zero have been pushing for more intensification, particularly around public transport routes.
Auckland 2040 and Herne Bay Residents Association co-chair Christine Cavanagh said there were serious issues of natural justice for residents of the single-house zone.
Only people who submitted views on the Unitary Plan can take part in any changes. Mrs Cavanagh said this meant many residents were being shut out of the process.
Mr Duguid said on the Auckland isthmus the single-house zone was shrinking from 35 per cent to 21 per cent, and from 31 per cent to 23 per cent in West Auckland. It would be similar in the north and south.
Deputy Mayor Penny Hulse said Auckland-wide figures showed the single-house zone falling from 36.1 to 28.8 per cent. Maps of the changes would be made public next month, she said. She backs the zone changes.
Mr Duguid said the council had no plans to notify individual residents of the changes.
Kumeu-Huapai Residents and Ratepayers Association chairman Pete Sinton said it was madness to rezone Kumeu to mixed housing when it was a car-oriented town with no public transport.
The concerns from Kumeu-Haupai are legitimate given the location of Kumeu and no decent public transport facilities out there given the North Western Busway (which only goes as far as Westgate if built) is not on NZTA’a agenda at the moment for construction.
For the rest Auckland 2040 is seriously blowing the proverbial here especially threatening Court action before the Unitary Plan goes live (in which you can then appeal either to the Environment Court and High Court depending what the appeal was). If Burton is going to do this challenge then I am inclined to have him chucked from the rest of the process entirely until it goes live as it is going to muck other submitters, the Panel and Council around.
Because the rezoning Council is embarking on is perfectly legitimate in response to submitters whether they have asked for a downzone (which has happened) or an upzone (which is happening). So how 2040 reconciles that one feel free to let me know.
If you look at my memorandum I sent to the Panel and Council last week in reply it has an extract from my submission where I asked for a rezoning of Manukau to the new proposed Super Metropolitan Centre but more specifically upzoning the entire Isthmus and an area of Southern Auckland to higher density zones than what was proposed at Notification in September 2013.
So it can be argued Council has responded in favour of at least my submission to more upzoning. If people had objections to it they could have lodged a further submission against my primary submission of which two people did.
The maps are out next month with the new zone spatial applications. Now I know the Isthmus has been rezoned outside of the established Heritage areas recognised by the Hearings Panel. West Auckland wasn’t up for much given it carries a lot of the higher density zoning any way while with the South it wasn’t sure yet.
Come on Auckland 2040 stop throwing your toys out of the cot after your actual good work with the Panel and Council on the development controls for the Mixed Housing zones. Don’t undo the good work you have done there through threats of court action over what Council is doing is legitimate and in reply to what the Panel has asked (spatial application of the zones)
013, 051-054, 059-063 – Panel Further Request for Demand and Supply Estimates
013, 051-054, 059-063 – Memorandum From Auckland Council – Further Modelling