Housing report welcomed but wider view on crisis urged

Publish Date : 21 Oct 2015
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Auckland Mayor Len Brown and Deputy Mayor Penny Hulse have welcomed the Productivity Commission’s Using Land for Housing report, but say the government and council need to consider a wider range of factors relating to the housing issues we face. 

The report looks at the supply of land for housing and explores the processes councils use to provide land including planning, zoning and provision of infrastructure such as roads, parks and water pipes. 

Len Brown says, “I’m pleased to see the report has taken into consideration a number of the points in our submission and has some common sense recommendations on how we can collectively tackle housing issues. 

“I particularly welcome the recommendations around working closely with the government. This reinforces that we are already on the right path in partnering with the government to address Auckland’s housing shortage. 

”The recommendation to government that it should enable motorway tolls or congestion charges on existing routes where that supports demand management is particularly encouraging. 

“This is a matter the government and the council will consider as part of the Auckland Transport Alignment Project, and the recommendation from the Productivity Commission is very opportune.” 

Penny Hulse says, “We are keen to explore opportunities to develop common sets of data and growth projections to underpin planning, and are heartened to see recommendations regarding long-term government infrastructure strategies. The report also talks about the need to ensure our Council-Controlled Organisations are aligned to the Auckland Plan and with the creation of Panuku Development Auckland we have already taken a major step forward.” 

Penny Hulse also welcomed the recommendation that the current exemption on government paying rates should be removed. “The commission is of the view this would release more crown land for housing and this is a process Nick Smith has already started.  But a requirement to pay rates would certainly provide an added incentive”. 

Len Brown says the report makes a significant contribution to the solutions required to tackle Auckland’s housing issues. “However there are many other matters that still require real attention such building industry productivity, the cost of building materials and how all this relates to how we build a great Auckland for all our people.”         



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