Add value to ten-acre sprawl
David Mitchell’s technique of exploring the meaning of real density on Waiheke (Architecture NZ 4.2013) was valuable, and suggested what we should be doing. The real sprawl in Auckland is not on the isthmus. Waiheke was once a balance of compact settlements and open space. Then the Council introduced the real sprawl of ten-acre subdivisions. If the Unitary plan rezoned each of those ten-acre lots for a single 18-storey apartment building all our problems would be over. Karaka and Coatsville too would be transformed into Corbusier’s dream. The density would justify a stream of ten-seater buses linking the apartments to the nearest wharf or railway station. No one would need to own a car. Planners could correct their last big mistake by adding value to the assets of the wealthy instead of penalising the poor. Everyone would win.
First published in Architecture NZ 5:2013