13 Mar 2013

Govt report backs Auckland Council's housing position

8:29 am on 13 March 2013

A Government report largely supports the Auckland Council in the debate over how much land is available for housing in the city.

The report questions whether simply adding more land on the rural fringe, will boost the number of houses built.

Minister of Housing Nick Smith has threatened to intervene to make more Auckland greenfield land available for housing.

However, a report by his own ministry, obtained by Radio New Zealand News, says that alone is unlikely to increase construction.

The Ministry of Business Innovation and Employment says the biggest slump in home building in Auckland has occurred in higher density central Auckland.

It says the rate of building generally larger, more expensive, homes on the city fringes is relatively constant, although below the peak of ten years earlier.

The report notes that a challenge to meeting Auckland's housing needs could be the state of the development industry, in which the number of players has fallen by two thirds in the past decade.

The document largely agrees with council data showing there is three years worth of housing land ready for developers to begin subdividing.