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17,000 extra homes for Wellington

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  • 17,000 extra homes for Wellington

    17,000 extra homes for Wellington
    By REBECCA PALMER - The Dominion Post | Friday, 25 April 2008

    Wellington City Council has unveiled its blueprint to squeeze up to 17,000 extra apartments and townhouses into the city.

    City planners have identified 12 areas where they plan to encourage higher-density housing. They include the central city, suburban centres, part of the main street of Newtown, a small street in Berhampore and Lyall Bay Parade.

    Developers could face minimum-density requirements in those areas, "in other words, saying you can't put a single house there", said councillor Andy Foster, urban development and transport portfolio leader.

    Under the proposals, some infill housing would still be allowed in other parts of the city, but tighter "quality" controls would be applied.

    City planners have also identified character areas that need protection from "inappropriate" development. They include inner-city suburbs, such as Aro Valley and Mt Cook, where restrictions on the demolition of pre-1930 buildings already apply. But reviews are proposed to ensure rules are consistent and to establish whether any extra protection is needed.

    The council is also considering a residential design guide for new developments in coastal areas, including the south coast.

    It estimates the 12 "areas of change" - many of which run along the capital's "growth spine" from Johnsonville to the airport - can handle up to 16,960 extra apartments, terrace houses and townhouses by 2051. They could accommodate up to 27,470 extra people.

    The council introduced new rules for infill housing last year, concerned at the quality of developments. The latest proposals are the second stage of its plan.

    Mr Foster said population projections showed Wellington would need 23,000 new homes for 37,000 extra residents by 2051. Targeted infill housing close to local centres was a sustainable option that used public resources efficiently.

    The areas had been chosen because they were close to public transport, schools, community services and shopping centres, and had "walkability".

    The council has identified opportunities for affordable housing in the growth areas.

    "More intensive forms of housing extend the affordability options for people, from first-home buyers and young families to new retirees and the elderly," Mr Foster said.

    Council urban development and transport director Ernst Zollner said the city still had green spaces for future growth but demand for inner-city living was growing.

    The proposals will go to the public for consultation in just over a fortnight.

    Mr Foster said the council intended to start notifying district plan changes before the end of the year. In the growth areas, they could be "more permissive of heights and greater densities" and include minimum-density requirements.

    The council was still working out how to encourage growth in those areas. One possibility was forming a land development agency to acquire and amalgamate land "and ... giving design standards for this area". The council would then sell the land to the developer with the best proposal.

    "There's one way to find out if a man is honest-ask him. If he says 'yes,' you know he is a crook." Groucho Marx

  • #2
    Wow that is a lot of living spaces especially given the obvious restrictions in Wgn - we will end up looking like a wee Hong Kong.....washing on the balconys and all.

    Another thought is the planes coming into Wgn already have enough to contend with currently without the added complication of flying T Shirts and other clothing items torn away from high rise apartment towers in the ever so frequent wind gusts!.

    What a thought....thank goodness Air New Zealand will be flying from Kapiti soon - that sounds like a safer option.


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