Council takes thoughtful approach to meeting future housing needs

9 September 2015

Khandallah, Newlands and Island Bay are the next communities scheduled to discuss greater housing choice and supply following today’s Transport and Urban Development decision.

3 storey model

Model of three-storey homes

“We need to prepare Wellington for the future,” says Committee Chair Councillor Andy Foster. “Our population has risen from just under 150,000 in 1991 to a shade over 200,000 today, and is expected to reach 250,000 by around 2043. We need to plan ahead to offer housing choices that meet the needs for ageing in place, smaller families and the increase of individuals and couples without children.”

“Town centre upgrades and other improvements may also need to be made to align with the increase in housing. These improvements require resources and potential District Plan changes, which take time and planning.”

While the fastest population growth is happening in the central city – with another 15,000 more people expected to live here in the next 30 years – extra housing will also be needed in our suburbs. Khandallah, Newlands and Island Bay were chosen because they have good access to shopping, employment and a range of community and recreation facilities, excellent public transport links, and the land capacity to support development. They are planned to follow existing medium-density areas in Johnsonville and Kilbirnie, and the higher-density area in Adelaide Road. Consultation is already under way regarding Karori and Tawa.

“We’re already seeing in Wellington that good urban form has a dramatic effect in transport decisions and is a key reason for Wellingtonians being far more likely to walk, bike or use public transport than any other part of the country,” says Councillor Foster. “What is really positive is that the proportion of people choosing those modes to get around is rising strongly.”

Khandallah, Newlands and Island Bay residents and other Wellingtonians will be encouraged to join the discussion during an October/November consultation period. The consultation will cover topics such as where medium-density housing should go in these suburbs, the type of housing that fits the suburb’s character, and to develop a common understanding of what “quality development” means. Communities will have the opportunity to help shape the boundaries and rules for the medium-density housing areas.

This work forms part of the Council’s multi-faceted strategy to manage housing development in Wellington, as explained in the Wellington Urban Growth Plan. Town centre density development provisions are now included in the District Plan. Additionally, the Council has signed a Wellington Housing Accord with central government as another tool to help provide housing supply and choice in Wellington.

For more information go to wellington.govt.nz/housing-choice, email housing.choice@wcc.govt.nz or phone 04 499 4444.