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The Unitary Plan: why does it say?

NZ NewswireNZ Newswire 27/07/2016

The Auckland Council has just released a proposal for the city's Unitary Plan. But what is the plan and what does it say?

WHAT'S THE UNITARY PLAN?

* It's the long-term rulebook for Auckland's planning and growth

* For at least 10 years it will determine what can be built and where across the entire city - including housing density - and replaces eight separate plans from before the super-city merger

THE PROCESS

* An Independent Hearing Panel has over two years heard 13,000 submissions - including from the council - and created a report tens of thousands of pages long

* The Auckland Council then votes on whether it will accept the recommendations made in the report

WHAT HAS BEEN PROPOSED?

*More density, including 270,000 homes within Auckland's limits

*A 40 per cent decrease in single home properties across the city compare to what the council wanted, with nearly 50 per cent more houses up to three stories and 25 per cent more apartments

*In particular large parts of Central Auckland and sections of the North Shore face greater density

*Creating space for 130,000 in seven years to help with current shortages

*Stretching the city's boundaries to fit 30 per cent of new homes and making changes easier, but not scrapping the limit altogether

*Removing some protection from homes built before 1944

ISSUES

* Some Auckland residents have fiercely opposed intensification in the city's leafy inner suburbs, prompting councillors to earlier scrap last-minute density increases from their proposal to the panel

* They now face having to pass an intensification plan again, only months later

* If the council rejects major parts of the proposal, the city may be left without a working plan and the government has warned it may step in

WHAT NEXT?

* Councillors will debate the proposals in open meetings from August 10 to August 18 before announcing their decision

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