Mayor 'confident' of housing solution
Tue, 30 Oct 2012 12:06p.m.
By Adam Hollingworth
The Government's plans to make housing more affordable are coming under fire.
Finance Minister Bill English announced plans to release more land for housing development and speed up resource consent, but opponents say that's not enough.
The housing crisis is at its most acute in Auckland, where the population is expected to swell by more than 1 million over the next 30 years.
A real estate industry commentator says releasing land is only a small part of the solution.
"The Government's idea of opening up land is good but that's only going to be a quarter of the necessary land," says Alistair Helm.
"The land has to be found within, and the land has to come from not building on parks. It's got to come from inner city intensification, it's got to go up, and we've got to build well and smart – quality construction for good services and amenities."
Auckland needs 13,000 new homes every year, but just half that number is currently being built. Mayor Len brown says construction is picking up in the south, west and north of the city.
"The way in which we're building at the moment, I'd be confident over the next 12 to 18 months that we reach those levels," says Mr Brown. "Seven, eight nine, 10,000, there's significant activity out there."
The Government also wants to speed up the resource consent process, which raises the spectre of the corner-cutting that led to leaky homes – but the council maintains it is possible to build quality cheaply.
"Doesn't always have to be expensive, but there are some things that we need to do better than we have done before," says Deputy Mayor Penny Hulse, "so this is a good time to look at good building in our city, range of housing choices with a better quality than we are used to."
The Government accepts it'll take time for its plans to change the market, so any first-time buyer currently in the market probably won't benefit.
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14/11/2012 3:53:30 p.m.
Linda, now babyboomers can take retirement payouts to Aussie do you see htem staying in Auckland with million dollar properties. I'l be fleeeing to Thailand in 16 years when I retire, Len should do a HongKong and lease Auckland to China for 100 years.
31/10/2012 1:59:36 a.m.
There must be minimum standards for apartments in Auckland. The quality of life and dignity of the tenants should be the number one priority. Tiny apartments designed to maximize profit for developers by warehousing the poor will result in Auckland becoming a world-class slum. No one should imagine for a minute that this problem can be solved without tackling Landlordism and House-hoarding.
30/10/2012 2:26:52 p.m.
We need more afforable house based on our income, workers wages are going down not up. In a decade the housing market will be swamped, house owning baby boomers will be fleeing Lens ratesd link to property values. Auckland population will decrease not increase as nobody will be able to asfford to work here.
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