A strategy to govern the city’s growth over the next three decades has been welcomed by Auckland Council’s Andy Baker.
The Franklin Ward councillor says the Future Development Strategy is a way of ensuring homes, jobs, and infrastructure are built in the right places, and balances the need for greenfield growth and development closer to local centres.
Baker says working with the Franklin Local Board resulted in specific measures for Franklin, meaning work can be done that recognises the area’s features, especially existing and planned employment opportunities.
“A lot of our people must travel to work. We need to create a better balance if we want to enable investment in schools, transport options and meet our carbon emissions targets.
“The more people use public transport, the more that frees up road space for the industries and people who really need it. Every person who gets on public transport creates a benefit for other people because they spend less time in congestion.”
Baker voted against the draft strategy because it did not sufficiently consider areas like Franklin, but the changes made give him confidence in the adopted plan.
"We have all seen prime land taken for housing, and that remains an issue, but the strategy also avoids development in flooding and natural hazard risk areas, where a high bar has been set for those wanting to develop, and some of the most at-risk parts of the future urban zone revert to rural zoning.”
He says the strategy seeks to concentrate development around existing infrastructure. “That is common-sense, the cost of building infrastructure to support developments outside those areas has proven challenging.
“The strategy will help create a city where people can live close to work and the amenities they need, which will in turn enable easier public transport, protect our environment and reduce emissions.”
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