Five years on from the birth of the new Auckland, the latest Auckland Scorecard has revealed that Aucklanders are enjoying better public transport, higher incomes, are better educated and have cleaner beaches.
The annual scorecard was introduced by Mayor Len Brown in 2011 and shows the progress Auckland is making towards the mayor’s vision of becoming the world’s most liveable city.
The scorecard enables Auckland to gauge its performance across a broad range of measures and complements other internationally recognised measures of liveability in cities. At the mayor’s request, there are liveability categories across economy, transport, communities and environment, covering 19 measures.
From a base index of 100 points, the latest index has lifted by 19 points since the birth of the united Auckland.
Len Brown says the latest scorecard shows a strong rate of improvement, with the work being done in areas such as public transport paying noticeable dividends.
Special housing areas help address housing challenge
While there are improvements in most categories, housing affordability remains the most challenging.
“There are obviously ongoing challenges with housing, but the special housing area work we are doing with the government is an example of the improvements that are starting to come through,” says the mayor.
“However, the trends are definitely swinging in the right direction, with new housing consents more than doubling since the creation of the new Auckland Council.”
He said that the Unitary Plan, Auckland Plan and the Economic Development Strategy were also important steps.
Improvements to public transport, youth employment
“I’m especially pleased that the public transport patronage growth is reflected in the improvement in the category of fixing transport in Auckland.
“It’s great to see progress in jobs, especially for young people, which is also a reflection of the youth pledges Auckland employers have been signing.
“When I became mayor, one of the big complaints was about the graffiti on buildings strewn throughout the region and it’s great to see the big progress in tackling that anti-social issue.”
Major events bring dividends
The mayor says economic measures such as the growth in visitor nights showed the council’s major events strategy paying off by attracting events such as the Dick Smith NRL Auckland Nines, the ITM 500 V8 Supercars and the recently announced new Auckland City Limits Music Festival.
Auckland continues to be recognised in internationally accepted surveys of liveable cities. In the most recent, The Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU) rated Auckland as number nine in its report on 140 cities. It moved up from number 10.
In 19 categories of the latest scorecard, there have been improvements in all but four categories.