Rudman calls for a bigger Auckland

Brian Rudman writes:

In Monday’s Herald, Unitec urban design experts Dushko Bogunovich and Matthew Bradbury revisited their alternative approach.

Instead of squeezing apartment buildings on to parks and golf courses, felling mature trees and doubling the size of motorways, they proposed a linear city, stretching initially from Wellsford and Helensville to Pokeno and Orere Point and possibly further.

Not random sprawl, as some are clamouring for, but carefully planned growth as occurs in Europe, along a single transport corridor, serviced by high-capacity, high-frequency transit.

Professor Bogunovich has been submitting reports and papers along these lines for years – so far to deaf ears. But now the reality of trying to crowd 400,000 new homes on to the isthmus over the next 30 years, as many as possible into established suburbs, is starting to hit home, maybe his linear city’s time has come.

Destroying the enviable environment that keeps Auckland near the top of assorted world liveability charts, in pursuit of some planning goal, is a bit like the quip about the operation being a complete success, shame the patient died.

My view is that Auckland needs to build both out an up. Just doing one of them will lead to failure. The real challenge is to determine the right balance. Town planners seem to be focused on the vast majority being up instead of out.


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