10 Oct 2013

Auckland fast-tracks big rural housing developments

12:33 am on 10 October 2013

Major housing developments on Auckland's outskirts feature prominently on a list of areas where new homes are to be built as part of the city's Housing Accord.

Len Brown
Nick Smith

Len Brown and Nick Smith announce the Special Housing Areas. The largest single property owner in the 70 hectare "Huapai Triangle" Special Housing Area, is the Nobilo winery owned by US-based Constellation Brands. Photo: RNZ

More than 5000 homes could be built in areas announced on Wednesday, including the northwestern township of Huapai, and Pukekohe in the south.

The Special Housing Areas under the accord between the council and government are intended to fast-track building to ease the city's shortage of 30,000-plus houses.

A 65 hectare site in Huapai will cater for 2000 homes.

Near Pukekohe, Wesley College will progressively develop 267 hectares of farm land it owns, starting with an initial 1000 of an eventual 6000 homes.

Auckland Council said it now awaited firm development plans. It hoped about five hundred homes could be built in the coming twelve months.

Taxpayer funds needed

The chair of a community board in the suburb of Kumeu says the Government needs to build a bigger school and better roads if thousands of new homes are built under the Auckland Housing Accord.

The chair of the Kumeu-Huapai Ratepayers and Residents Association, Pete Sinton, says the primary school is nearly full and needs to be expanded if it's to properly service the area.

But he says the proposal may force the council to look at building extra roads the community board has been asking for, for years.