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Updating Whenuapai structure plan gets underway

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Staff Reporter

09 June 2024, 6:54 PM

Updating Whenuapai structure plan gets underwayAuckland Council initiates refresh of community blueprint

The Planning, Environment, and Parks Committee have given the green light to commence the update of the structure plan for Whenuapai, a move aimed at aligning with evolving government policies and addressing climate change concerns.

Over recent years, shifts in governmental directives and a heightened focus on climate change impacts have prompted the need for revisions to the 2016 Whenuapai Structure Plan.

This blueprint serves as a guide for the sustainable development of the area, encompassing zoning, infrastructure, and environmental considerations.

A structure plan delineates the future growth of a region, providing a framework for the establishment of a sustainable community.

It outlines zoning for various purposes, ensuring a balance between residential, commercial, and recreational spaces while addressing constraints such as flooding and coastal erosion.

Moreover, the plan maps out essential infrastructure requirements, including roads, utilities, and social amenities like parks and recreational facilities.

By delineating these needs in advance, the council can strategise funding and incorporate them into long-term plans.

The initiative aligns with Auckland Council's broader strategy to manage the city's burgeoning population growth.

Central to this strategy is the 'quality compact approach,' emphasising the concentration of future housing developments in existing urban areas near essential amenities.

While the majority of new housing developments adhere to this approach, there remains space for greenfield growth, particularly on the outskirts of urban areas like Whenuapai.

This balanced approach aims to provide housing options while mitigating urban sprawl and ensuring infrastructure development keeps pace with population growth.

Whenuapai, situated on the city's periphery and home to the Whenuapai airbase, presents unique planning challenges.

The proposed update to the structure plan includes considerations for new industrial zones, areas of varying residential densities, and mitigation measures for engine noise from the airbase.

Transportation infrastructure also features prominently in the plan, with a focus on enhancing walking, cycling, and public transit options.

NZTA is actively working on long-term connectivity plans to integrate Whenuapai with major transport routes.

Public engagement is integral to the planning process, ensuring community input aligns with broader development objectives and climate resilience efforts.

The Council encourages residents and stakeholders to participate in shaping the future of Whenuapai through upcoming engagement opportunities.

Auckland Council is currently in the preliminary stages of drafting the updated structure plan for Whenuapai, with public consultation expected later in 2024.