The other day we talked about Infrastructure NZ (INZ) calling for a pipeline of projects at their annual conference last week. They also used that conference to release a discussion document calling for satellite city around Paerata. This was picked up by media, such as this report by the Herald on the Sunday.

The Government is interested in a plan to build a new satellite city in South Auckland capable of eventually housing 500,000 people.

Housing Minister Phil Twyford told the Herald today he is very interested in work being done by Infrastructure New Zealand for a satellite city centred round the small settlement of Paerata where Wesley College is situated, just north of Pukekohe.

Infrastructure New Zealand chief executive Stephen Selwood said the city could eventually extend northwest to Karaka and across the Pahurehure Inlet to Weymouth.

A discussion document from Infrastructure New Zealand says land around the rail line at Paerata could initially add 30,000 homes on unzoned land priced for $450,000.

By 2050, the new city could have tens of thousands of homes serving a population of 500,000 people within 30 minutes of central Auckland, including non-stop rail services and modern trams to the airport.

It appears to me that INZ fail to grasp, or at least wilfully ignore, what cities are and why they exist. Starting from the premise that intensification is too hard and un-liked in the suburbs, they seem to assume you can just magic up a dense city far from anywhere and that people will flock to live there. It reminds me of the stories we hear of from time to time of huge, brand new cities built in China that are almost ghost towns. Closer to home we only have to look at the likes of Albany, Botany and Manukau. At one point, each of them were thought of in the same way and nothing INZ are suggesting now inspires me to think this time will be any different.

While their document does seem to contain a few good points hidden throughout its pages but they’re generally mixed in between a liberal amount of sprawl promotion and pushing for building infrastructure for the sake of building infrastructure.

Much of the thrust of the report has been boiled down into this video they’ve published to go alongside the report. It contains a healthy amount of greenwash and the graphics almost look like they’ve come from a Sim City type game. I can’t help but wonder if the policy has too.

There are a number of things to discuss about this idea.

There is already development underway around Paerata as part of the Wesley development. That is estimated to have capacity for up to 5,000 dwellings and is (the solid tan colour). There is more land is nearby zoned as “Future Urban Zone” (yellow) nearby.

You’ll note that Future Urban Zone doesn’t include up around Karaka and the Pahurehure Inlet. You may recall that during the Unitary Plan there was a debate about exactly that location with some of the land owners pushing heavily for it to be included. The Independent Hearings Panel ultimately rejected the idea due to it needing substantial infrastructure, such as the Weymouth Bridge, to support it. The Weymouth bridge alone was estimated over a decade ago to cost about $1 billion. Probably one of the reasons why INZ are pushing for it.

Infrastructure NZs vision for the greenfield land near Paerata

It’s also worth noting that it’s these days it’s not available land that’s the biggest barrier to greenfield development but land that’s serviced with infrastructure. Just the core transport networks for the planned greenfield developments in the North, Northwest and South alone are expected to cost close to $200k per dwelling. That cost is notable as INZ suggest their new city would cost just $77k per section. This is likely in part because they treat the recent Transport for Future Urban Growth network as a base case. Given how much extra capacity it must have it just confirms how overbuilt those networks are.

A view of Infrastructure NZs new southern city. Rail elevated above an elevated road would make for some horrible ground level impacts for pedestrians

As part of the transport upgrades they want to see the southern line duplicated to four lanes with all level crossings removed which they claim will cost $2 billion to deliver. This is in part to provide express services to the city centre. This sounds at least in part like our Regional Rapid Rail proposal.

Given the size that would be needed to support 500k people, it seems almost inevitable that this ‘satellite city’ would end up merged with the existing urban area. In other words this isn’t a satellite that’s being proposed but just one big extension to the existing urban area.

Below are a couple of comments from the executive summary I wanted to comment on:

The allocations of housing and employment growth in the Unitary Plan are misaligned with Auckland’s infrastructure services. The Independent Panel on the Unitary Plan assumed infrastructure could be provided to meet growth. Transport modelling shows that it cannot. Growth is everywhere and nowhere and lumpy infrastructure investment cannot keep up

I believe they’re talking about ATAP when referring to the transport modelling. In the actual document they comment about how improvements to congestion can only be made by road pricing which they make out to be a bad thing. This is odd given they’ve been some of the strongest and loudest backers of road pricing or tolling.

Paerata’s land is still cheap, but rising quickly. If bought at today’s prices, an average section of raw land would cost $17,000. Three years ago, it cost $10,000. Land in Dairy Flat is over twice the price, rising faster and sections are smaller so land aggregation more difficult. If authorities can move before the market in Paerata, land value can be captured and used to offset infrastructure costs

I do think we should look at all options to pay for the infrastructure that’s needed. However, if this such a good deal, why don’t INZ or their members buy it. This sounds suspiciously like some land bankers in the area trying to get the government/council to buy them out.

Auckland must start using growth to catalyse the investments the city wants, not letting growth determine the investments it has to make

I couldn’t agree more and is why the city has pushed for significant public transport with projects like the City Rail Link and Light Rail. Of course, this isn’t quite what INZ mean when they think of “using growth”.

I can’t help but think that INZ would be better served by working out how the industry is going to scale up to build the infrastructure and houses we need. They’re also clearly now on board with the idea of a compact city, well connected by walking, cycling and PT next we just need to get them to realise that it’s entirely possible to deliver that within the existing urban area which will benefit even more people.

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100 comments

  1. Ports of Auckland are moving here maybe? Yes Cities need a reason though, so if ports move here then thats a pretty good reason. Also South of Kumeu on rail way could work?

  2. If you have a fresh start to create a city like this, there is no need to be building huge overpasses like that in the image above.

    I once built a SimCity that had no roads, in fact no surface transport – it was all just a subway grid.

    Obviously in the real world you need some roads, but the point here is that, with the right planning, you can avoid the difficult issues that Auckland proper is facing today.

    P L A N . I T . R I G H T . T H E . F I R S T . T I M E

    1. Check out Forest City in Malaysia – they’re doing exactly that, all roads underground with surface light rail. Not saying thats a great development example though – looks good in the promotion material but I’ve got a feeling it will be different in reality.

  3. Hopefully, Mr. Twyford avoids this like the plague. The costs alone are huge and using less money we can get far better outcomes for the current city.
    Satellite cities have not worked in Auckland, Mankau an example, and just create urban sprawl. People actually want to live in Auckland and, therefore, we need to build the housing there. As been said here many times this means allowing for urban density not pushing suburbs further south.

    1. Now, now… That’s uncalled for. Even if it is most likely to be true! 🙂

      EDIT: Just saw your link. You nailed the majority, all right!

  4. Manukau was built to a car culture with very limited housing in the town centre and railway line kilometers away. Paerata has main rail line right there and fork to Patamohoe and Waiuku also within the boundaries of extended town so is a better start if planned well.

  5. OMG just googled their board: lol https://www.infrastructure.org.nz/Our-Board
    I have a feeling if they had some younger/ more woman slightly more representative board they could come up with an idea perhaps like build some food paths in sky not roads, put some canals through link Manakau and Waitemata and create a ferry linking two, turn Grey Lynn to high rise.

  6. So, INZ could build all the infrastructure but how would they attract people or companies to move there? It’s pretty obvious that there would have to be a big incentive. I honestly can’t see many companies that serve more than a local area moving there – it’s so far away it’d limit their ability to hire the staff they need. Similarly – people that moved there would be looking at moving somewhere more convenient later on.

    I also can’t see why would they densify to start with – with abundant land low density sprawl is much cheaper to build (and they wouldn’t have to bear the cost to operate the infrastructure (trasnport/water etc)).

    Feels like someone is looking to offload the land quickly and make quick buck out of it and not worry about the consequences.

    The whole idea reminds me of this attempt to build a satellite city: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nowa_Huta

      1. I know we have a left-leaning government now, but somehow I don’t see them building a city like that and forcing people to live in flats/appartments there.

        Don’t get me wrong – over the 60-odd year period that place (Nowa Huta) did work, but mainly because people had no choice but to live there.

    1. So we can never interfere with the workings of the “holy market” and the only thing that can determine living patterns is unfettered capitalism and supply and demand?

      1. You can certainly have state intervention in the market but if people and businesses are not interested in relocating to what is proposed then you are basically just gambling with taxpayers money.

          1. I am aware of that, but I suspect thankfully I am in the vast majority of New Zealanders that would not support the forced relocation of businesses and people, so it is highly unlikely to happen unless there is an end to democracy.

          2. If Stalin hadn’t forced the relocation of Soviet industry to the Urals, the German advance in WW2 would have decimated the Red Army’s ability to recharge.
            As a result, the Germans would have seized Moscow, Leningrad, and Stalingrad in 1942, forcing a Soviet surrender. This would have freed up 200+ divisions as well as opened up a path via the Caucasus into the Middle East, dooming the Allied position in North Africa. Shorn of the entire Mediterranean coastline, the Allies would have been faced with an almost untenable position – unable to launch a cross-channel invasion without any distractions to the Axis, facing a much larger force. The end result would have been Nazi control of Europe and likely, over much of the world.

          3. Golly. Can we offer them some chocolate and wine to get them to move, then? I don’t want the Nazis to take over.

          4. What the actual fuck am I reading.

            Mate we get it you like history no need to write a paragraph of pointless intellectual masturbation to show us how pro you are lol

          5. Is this Stalin who saved the world from Nazi domination the same Stalin who signed the neutrality pact between Nazi Germany and the Soviet Union in Moscow on 23 August 1939. It included a secret protocol that divided territories of Poland, Lithuania, Latvia, Estonia, Finland, and Romania, into German and Soviet “spheres of influence”, anticipating “territorial and political rearrangements” of these countries. Poland was jointly invaded a week later.

          6. Yes Bob that’s the man. The same one who had most of his officers shot just in time for the war to start. Maybe if he hadn’t there would have been no need to force his industry to relocate. I suggest we try that path – nobody gets shot and nobody gets forced to relocate.

      2. We already do interfere heavily in the market through land zoning rules.

        The RMA was meant to be effects based, not zoning based like the town & country planning act.

        We have interfered in the market so much with the zoning rules that the land supply is quite inelastic and thus the land prices are driven too high.

        Its a perfect storm along with very low interest rates, high immigration into Auckland, a construction sector smaller than the market demand, & no profit to be made in smaller more affordable housing (which is what the market is actually demanding – it is the poorer that are shut out of the market)

  7. “This sounds suspiciously like some land bankers in the area trying to get the government/council to buy them out.”

    Bing.

    Need to look at two things:
    – Who are the members of the INZ Board that wish to see this promoted?
    They are financiers of ppp’s, plus one Auckland Council official.

    – Who is on the Wesley Board, and who are the land owners who stand to benefit?
    Not that hard to figure that out and ask the right questions in that intensely networked community.

    The Minister has little choice but to look at this because greenfields really is easier and faster to develop than brownfields. Volume and speed really is important, but so is yield and quality: Westgate 10 years ago and Albany 20 years ago come to mind.

    But the Minister needs to carefully shield himself from the inevitable stories about who he has enabled to get rich.

  8. Thank God someone has pointed out that the emperor is stark bollock naked. INZ must be one of the most incompetent ginger groups in the country.

    This isn’t a satellite city its an expensive and unnecessary suburban development masquerading as something bold and innovative.

    The AUP has it spot on. The only realistic candidates for intensification are the metropolitan centres and even then they need to be on a rapid transport node.

    Witness Albany – when first launched decades ago there were pretty renderings of clusters og 18 story towers. Well didn’t that work out well. And that’s in an area adjacent to employment opportunities and existing suburbs in relatively close proximity to the CBD. Not a paddock on the rural fringes

    1. Albany was a paddock on the rural fringes. When the development started it was isolated in the country and the motorway went no where near it. It could be argued that as it is now a tech hub with self contained infrastructure and services it was a success as a satellite.

      1. Albany was an infill suburb adjacent to the already developed Bays and Sunnynook. Large scale development started in the 90’s by which time the motorway went as far as Oteha Valley

          1. I’ve meet with Council and AT planners who acknowledge that and admit it is way too car centric and said they would get it better next time. Then they go and duplicate it at North-West…

            dr – no idea what your comment is supposed to imply

  9. INZ have been busy recently, haven’t they? But as the saying goes, both the bee and the mosquito are busy. Guess which INZ is.

    Regarding China and it’s ghost towns, that issue is complicated and is a very China issue.

    An answer from Forbes Asia (source: http://www.forbes.com/sites/wadeshepard/2016/01/19/one-way-that-china-populates-its-ghost-cities/): “The first and probably most profound challenge for populating China’s so-called ghost cities could be called the Catch-22 of new city building: few people are going to move into a city without adequate transportation links, stores, schools, healthcare, and places to work, and these entities are slow to move into a place without people. So how does China get people to move into its new outposts of progress? The same way the country does almost everything else: by fiat.

    The way China builds an initial population in its new cities is simple: it makes people move into them. So when a municipality decides to flip on the switch of one of its large new cities or districts — like Shanghai’s Pudong, Zhengzhou’s Zhengdong, or Guangzhou’s Zhujiang — the wheels start moving: government headquarters, the offices of banks and state-owned enterprises, and university campuses are shipped in, subsidies and tax breaks are given to private companies to relocate, and everyone who is associated with these entities are compelled to follow along.”

    Add to that the fact that there has been a strong incentive by local governments to finance real estate construction and that you don’t buy the land, just the option to build on the land – Which you must do within two years…

    So, back on topic, in a New Zealand implementation of INZ’s idea you’d have to build transport and other infra pretty damn near the head of the project (high sunk cost) and only _some_ retail and residential, but with clear published plans and timeframes for expansion. If INZ did somehow manage to get the whole shebang in one hit, yeah – It’s pretty hard to see it _not_ becoming a ghost town.

    Also pretty hard to see the project being financially viable!

    1. Well either Auckland isn’t China or Auckland Council aren’t all that enthusiastic about supporting development in the Pukekohe area, Chinese style. The Council closed the Pukekohe Resource Consent and Building Consent offices in Pukekohe on Friday. This means about another 20 workers trying to get to Manukau from Pukekohe every day, let alone all the trips that the builders, surveyors, home owners and architects of the Pukekohe area will have to make to Manukau every day.

  10. If a proposal so obviously does not make sense, you begin to wonder about vested interests. Who in INZ owns land around Paerata?

  11. Let’s not conflate two issues
    – the value of satellite cities, and
    – the value of auto-dependent design

    Now, satellite cities could be designed in a way using high speed public transport in a way that would enable us to achieve all the benefits of suburbia (backyards, trees) while retaining the benefits of urban density (quick commutes to work, reduced carbon footprint)

    Would you rather live in
    – a shoebox apartment 20 minutes walk from work, OR
    – a nice 3 bedroom house with a big backyard and heaps of trees 20 minutes train from work?

    Remember, travel is about time not distance; distance is a proxy only.

    1. You seem to be conflating two things yourself – suburbs and satellite cities. You appear to be pointing towards the benefits of suburbs where people travel somewhere else to work, while INZ are talking about a new city with it’s own high density core and facilities such as a University.

        1. If it works. Are businesses going to want to locate themselves in Paerata in big numbers? Are people going to be keen on high density living so far from the Auckland CBD?

          1. Well, there are many possibilities outside the higher cost-per-util you’re already getting when you move here
            Special Economic Zones
            Relaxed immigration standards

          2. There is a case for incentives if there is a clear economic benefit of this satellite city in the future, but I am struggling to see what that benefit is.

            The benefits you mention are being able to have a bigger house and section, but if this becomes a full satellite city then I doubt there will be low density close to the main train stations.

          3. The benefits are that people can still make money from development without having to clean up the mess they’re leaving behind in the real city, because noone wants to foot the bill for that.

      1. That’s no reason. Quentin Crisp said if you don’t do any housework for 7 years then after that it doesn’t get any worse.

          1. It’s still successful, I find. Only problem is getting music back to the teacher without it having been eaten first.

    2. – a shoebox apartment 20 minutes walk from work, OR
      – a nice 3 bedroom house with a big backyard and heaps of trees 20 minutes train from work?

      And these are the only two choices? Yeah right.

      1. Cept you will likely have to walk to/from the station so be more than 20min + also I could cycle reducing my 20min walk.

        Checkmate

          1. Where is this town that is only a 16 minute train ride away? Are you talking about the current CBD or somewhere else? I can’t see a train making it from Paerata to the CBD in 16 mins.

          2. From our past efforts at satellite towns, I would expect any land within a 2 minute walk of that station will be taken up by the park & ride.

            Or if we approach this in a sane way, any land within a 2 minute walk of the station will be taken up by something more substantial than a few houses with big backyards.

          3. Erm a town where the houses are two minutes walk from the train would be about 300m across. Given the first minute or so would be taken up by the station and roads, you’re theoretical option is a very small village, with 3 bedroom homes on big sections you are talking about perhaps a few dozen houses in your two minute Satellite City.

            Sorry, does not compute. If you want 3 bedroom houses with a big backyard and heaps of trees they take up a lot of land each, and you’ll be walking a hell of a lot longer.

          4. By putting the train tracks into a depression, and building the houses on the slopes above, we can use gravity to assist walkers to train stations thus reducing average walking transit times.
            At an approximate human speed of say 5m/s we could extend the 2 minute walk to a whopping 282,000 square metres of inhabitation

  12. Why would a bridge to Weymouth cost $1 billion? What kind of bridge was being sought? A 6 lane motorway? That seems like a very high cost for a bridge.

    1. Hey, gotta build it right first time! No excuses not to build a motorway spec bridge, just in case the car experiences a resurgence – Or for the massive amount of horse-drawn carriages we’ll need if/when a solar flare sends us back to the stone age…

      🙂

  13. Part of the problem of this is re-purposing of finance – the money that should be sent in Auckland upgrading existing infrastructure would instead be spent built something like this.

    We’d still need to spend this money in Auckland – wastewater issues for example is shocking.

    1. Exactly. This is about just ignoring the real problems. Like nomads walking away to new bounty, except that the waste left behind isn’t biodegradable.

  14. Auckland already has a satellite city and its called Hamilton.

    Whilst the INZ concept is great for Greenfields, like with every thing else in Auckland, it will be come part of the great Auckland sprawl like Albany, Owera, etc. Auckland needs to stop expanding and consolidate.

    With all of the building that is happening in Hamilton, it would cheaper for the government to do build affordable housing in Hamilton as well on surplus crown land closer to Auckland city. Double track and electrified the rail line between Pukekoe and Hamilton and finishing building the Waikato Expressway. With the completion of the the City Rail Link, there can be frequent electric train services between Auckland and Hamilton and onto the other Auckland satellite city of Tauranga.

    Hamilton already has the business support systems in place for SME businesses, an airport that can handle flights to Australia and Pacific Islands and good domestic air links to Wellington, Palmerston North and Christchurch. Tauranga has good air links to Auckland, Wellington and Christchurch, plus both Hamilton and Tauanga can generate regional air growth to Napier, Hastings, Gisborne, New Plymouth and Whanganui using 2nd level air carriers like Air Chathams.

    Our transport and city planners and central government needs to think outside the square and think regionally and stop urban sprawl.

  15. Why have a Unitary plan if this is what the Government ends up supporting?

    There’s tonnes of infrastructure and space along the existing transport corridors. All they need to do is provide funding/incentive for people to develop them. The targeted rate may help in this regard, but access to capital and potentially buying 75% of all new kiwibuilds would force brownfield development, close to Auckland.

    Why build another satellite city when the unitary plan fully identified that Auckland’s housing struggles could be solved with strong redevelopment.

  16. Great article Matt. I have had my concerns about INZ thinking and position every since they presented at the East Eest Link. That debacle aside what happens to this new city In a economic down turn? The risk of a economic downturn seem higher given recent comments from the new government. Surely investing in the existing city is a smarter way to spend our money.

    1. idk I wont rank it funny till JDELH tells us about his vampire fan fic drama where he falls in love with Stalin which I guarantee he has written.

      #teamleninade

  17. Hey no picking on Manukau okay >_<

    The INZ piece has certainly caused a big enough flap down here in the South and an unnecessary one at that (resulting in a few fires needing hosing in the community pages) after three years of Unitary Plan set up and currently we have the Drury-Pukekohe Structure Plan under way (submissions closed last week).

    Despite what INZ replied to my challenge in Twitter I dont think they have read the Unitary Plan AT ALL. The FUZ down here has enough for 55,000 homes at 165,000 residents and 35,000 jobs. We can upscale then the FUZ is flipped to a live urban zone when demand requires it so.

    It sounds like the old Karaka North lot who had their submissions rejected by the IHP are pushing this again – if not apologies in retrospect. One to be watched

        1. Puhinui looks like a good spot – especially with a BRT or LR going past.

          The Ranfurly/Popes/Airfields Rd block is pretty big. Ihumatao seems a bit far away unless they put in some good PT. These are the types of blocks that could copy the Hobsonville development model.

          What’s the difference between the Drury block and Paerata?

          1. Puhinui is to become light industry, first stages of getting that set up already under way.

            The Ranfurly/Popes/Airfields Road area is the last to come off the rank for development (3rd decade) due to our Local Councillor being a NIMBY

            As for Drury and Paerata? Paerata is set for residential only while Drury will have Residential, Commercial and Industry (part of the Drury South heavy industrial complex)

          2. Puhinui would be difficult with the current airnoise overlays the unitary plan uses. high noise and moderate noise areas have density controls that aren’t good for intensification

          3. Actually my office is right (*) under the flight path in Golden Arches. Sometimes I feel like I can point a hand up and wave at the pilots. You get used to it.

            You are right it would probably be bad for residential, but there is a lot of residential already nearby.

            (*) Our roof is in line with the air stripe and one of the last before SH20.

  18. I can’t believe no-one pointed out one of my favourite reasons why this is a dumb idea: putting more buildings on fertile Franklin farmland. We lost the Avondale market gardens. Don’t let’s lose Pukekohe potatoes.

    1. a few years ago the soil scientists were saying that the soil around Pukekohe has been so over-worked, over-fertilised and over-sprayed with goodness knows what, that it is now basically dead. It does a good job of holding the veggies upright so that even more fertilisers and bug killers can be sprayed on them, but there’s sod all real micro-nutrients left in it.
      Maybe it’s time for those high rise vertical farms with their new-fangled hydroponic and aeroponic growing techniques. You could walk past one on the way home from your office to your apartment and buy some fresh veggies picked just 30 minutes earlier, with no fossil transport miles in them

      1. The organic content of the soil has been depleted. Persistent chemicals have been added. But this holds for much of NZ’s soil. A radical change is required, and I think it’s coming: there have already been some radical changes away from heavy chemical use in some horticultural settings, particularly orchards.

        Even the most trashed Pukekohe soils still have a good basic ratio of sand, clay and silt, and of the major and trace elements. Pukekohe soils are infinitely better than soils people are relying on for food in most of the world. People are re-greening the deserts through good husbandry. If Pukekohe soils cannot be brought back to fertility, humanity might as well throw in the towel.

        When I attended a conference at Wesley College in 2016, its soil and ecology was beautiful.

        1. Pukekohe soils produce millions of dollars worth of export onions every year, every year. They are of more more commercial value than the film industry. How about an onion protection law?

  19. It’s a poor plan that simply repeats Auckland’s past mistakes.
    1978 could be 2018. Go to Paerata and read this script. I particularly like “an infestation of houses”

    https://www.nzonscreen.com/title/johnstones-journey-episode-five-1978

    Failure to execute on the unitary plan because of this type of state backed vanity project will be a travesty. Who on earth actually wants to live in this hell hole. In cities, for about 3000 years, people, that’s right the forgotten aspect of this Stalinist gulag, have traded space for proximity and convenience. Is Auckland immune from this reality or is it that unwholesome trinity of council (want to stay in power and collect rates -but we need to do something, anything) the pavlova paradise homeowners (voters and ratepayers – just don’t build it near me) and contractors developers (I will build it but not in your backyard) again going to sign up to that alignment of self interest that perpetuates this endless and grotesque sprawl. We need to end this – Auckland cannot afford to sprawl any further, from here on new housing units will be apartments / town houses in the central area.

  20. The proposal to build a satellite city at Paerata and any further urban sprawl around Pukekohe on prime fertile food producing soils is just madness. If you build (tightly packed) houses on Auckland’s last remaining major food basket, this could then potentially create a produce shortage and/or the price of vegetables increasing.

    Hopefully Phil Twyford will be astute enough to recognise that there are other more suitable areas where houses can be built along rail lines which would be more appropriate such as Kumeu / Huapai / Waimauku / Helensville (and the NAL is now going to be upgraded after Infrastructure Minister Shane Jones’ announcement last week to spend $800m upgrading the line and building a new branch line to the port at Marsden Point).

    Or further south around Tuakau / Pokeno / Te Kauwhata which has the NIMT running through them and are close to SH1.

    Closer to Auckland the Government and Auckland Council and INZ would do well to consider a major upgrade and redevelopment of central Papakura with intensification residential and retail development in conjunction with developing / redeveloping around Drury which of course are also along the NIMT.

  21. Infrastructure and access and (road) route security into Auckland from the south / Franklin could be better improved more easily and quickly than the proposed Mill Road corridor expressway, by building a new State Highway route between SH1 at Bombay and SH20 at Wiri, as a high quality 2 lane road using (upgraded) existing roads and building the Weymouth Bridge.

    A new State Highway could run from SH1 at Bombay along Mill Road, Pukekohe East Road, Belgium Road, Reynolds Road, Paerata Road, Glenbrook Road, Charles Road, Laing Road, Uquhart Road, over the Pahurehure Inlet via a new bridge to Weymouth Road and Roscommon Road to SH20 at Wiri.

    This would create a much more direct north-south route from Franklin than the proposed extension of the Mill Road corridor expressway, linking directly with Manukau City, the airport, the central city and west Auckland via the new Waterview Tunnel – all of which would help to ease the amount of pressure on the heavily congested SH1 through Auckland.

  22. Why can’t we just build highrises (offices and apartments) in existing areas like Albany which creates more homes and people can work closer to where they live.

  23. This sure does sound all a bit suspicious. Cute video. Would be nice access to the airport for them, but yes would all end up merging with surrounding urban areas surely eventually.

  24. They would need to go to Japan to learn how to build a proper TOD train station first.

    Most Auckland train stations has no amenity and doesn’t feel invited.

    A proper TOD station would have these:
    – Train on basement
    – Bus interchange on ground level
    – Upper level is a huge shopping mall
    – Top of the station will be high rise mixed used building that can be shopping mall, office, and residential
    – There are air conditioned overbridge links to other buildings surrounding the station, which also has first floor as retail as shopping mall and top as office/residential
    – Density goes down from high density to mid density to low density as it goes further away to station.

    1. HK have some stations like this as well Mong Kok East or Sha Tin.

      I think Onehunga should have a PT node like this on the waterfront. Station below and a commercial/residential complex above with sea views.

    2. yes, why aren’t any of Aucklands stations like this? Closest i can think is Manukau with MIT. What going on top of the Mercury Lane K’Rd CRL exit?

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