Auckland Best CityThe deadline for Unitary Plan submissions is this Friday. We think YOU should take the time to submit, because it will be key to how this city will look like in 5 or 10 years. Will we get ever-more-increasing numbers of cars everywhere, and rising house prices? Or will we be courageous enough to change course?

Our friends at Transport Blog unravel the issues with a bit more detail in articles like this one (UP and Parking) or this one (UP and Public Transport), but CAA’s submission – and hopefully yours – will highlight a few key points:

  • The Unitary Plan doesn’t allow enough apartment and terrace housing zoning. We need more areas where such zoning is allowed – especially near public transport routes. Otherwise, everyone will be competing for the much smaller number of detached houses, driving prices through the roof as Auckland grows (as if they weren’t high enough now!), and pushing people into more costly sprawl. Or simply away from Auckland, failing our city’s future. We can do mid-rises (say, 3-5 storey) well – cities all over the world do it, and they are great to live in. CAA supports this, because more car-dependent sprawl is deadly to a transport system that dares to dream of things other than cars.
    • This is covered in many different rules – don’t be afraid to ask for it in general terms, it’s their job to make sure your comments flow through.
  • The Unitary Plan still requires too much MANDATORY car parking. In most of Auckland, any normal house will still need 2 car parks. Why? Remember that this is a minimum, not a maximum. If people want 2 car parks for their house – fine. But don’t force the people who get along fine on 1 car to concrete over part of their future garden for a car park they don’t want. Minimum parking rates should go altogether, but at the very least, they need to be further relaxed.
    • This is covered in Rule PART 3 – REGIONAL AND DISTRICT RULES»Chapter H: Auckland-wide rules»1 Infrastructure»1.2 Transport»3. Development controls»3.2 Number of parking and loading spaces. Just mention that.
  • Support the proposed mandatory cycle parking rules. Why do we support this when we don’t support mandatory car parking? Well, first off, because the system is so out of whack in the car direction that some push in the opposite direction is needed. Also, because the proposed rules are actually quite sensible. Private houses and smaller shops – like your corner dairy – don’t have to find space to provide cycle parking somewhere on the site. It’s only the larger office buildings, the big places of employment, public buildings etc… that need to build cycle parking. That strikes us as a good compromise which will help make the city easier to get around by bike.
    • This is covered in Rule PART 3 – REGIONAL AND DISTRICT RULES»Chapter H: Auckland-wide rules»1 Infrastructure»1.2 Transport»3. Development controls»3.2 Number of parking and loading spaces. Just mention that

So let them hear this is what we want – show them that we aren’t so timid as to reject all change. Also remember that many powerful interest groups, and noisy “not in my backyard” groups are clamoring for attention, and for a “don’t change anything” attitude. We need a counterweight to that. Submit here by Friday.

 

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