Check out the unitary plan at workshop

Last updated 08:27 10/04/2013

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The unitary plan will shape Auckland's future and the Waiheke Local Board is putting on a workshop this Saturday for people who want to know more about it.

The draft Auckland Unitary Plan will eventually replace 14 of Auckland's existing district and regional plans. It will be the key tool to implement the Auckland Plan, which sets the strategic direction for Auckland's growth over the next 30 years.

Auckland needs 13,000 new affordable homes every year in the next 30 years to cope with its growing population. Intensified building is planned in metropolitan areas like Takapuna and Albany on the North Shore, and Manukau, Papakura and Botany in the south, which could see 18-storey high-rises.

Other areas are being identified for new growth in greenfield sites like Pukekohe, Kumeu and Riverhead.

The draft plan proposes to rationalise the existing 99 residential zones across Auckland into five: Single house, mixed housing, terraced housing and apartment building, large lot residential and rural and coastal settlement.

The plan does not affect Waiheke Island in that way because it has its own Hauraki Gulf Islands District Plan, which will become part of the unitary plan as an addendum, according to local board chairwoman Faye Storer. She says the gulf islands plan is "more advanced than anything in the region".

"It was known as a first generation district plan in 1990s and it was due for review earlier than any other district plan in 2006. So our district plan was well advanced into its first review by the time of the super-city amalgamation, whereas a lot of other plans in the region weren't even into a review."

Ms Storer says Auckland Council has exempted the Hauraki Gulf Islands District Plan from inclusion in the unitary plan process.

"Technically it will be a part of the unitary plan but in a separate section because of the area it covers - which includes Great Barrier as well as Rakino, Rangitoto, Ponui and other gulf islands."

That means no reticulation and in-fill housing for now, but what will be applied to the gulf islands is the "regional provisions".

These include marine areas, air, land, water and the coast - everything the former regional council dealt with before the supercity amalgamation, Ms Storer says.

"It's coming up for revision now and it's what we're taking part in."

The public workshop this Saturday is for people who want to know more about how the draft unitary plan affects Waiheke and for those who want to make submissions.

It will take place at the local board room at the Belgium St Service Centre from 11.30am to 1.30pm.

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Visit shapeauckland.co.nz to see the unitary plan online and make a submission by May 31.

- Waiheke Marketplace

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