Sound way to plan for our future
Residents will soon be able to see the notified version of the unitary plan with just weeks of discussion left before it is put before the governing body.
Deputy mayor Penny Hulse says clear communication with Aucklanders about how it will work remains an ongoing priority.
Notification of the plan is expected in late September or early October and communities will have greater access to hard copies than during the informal engagement period.
This time round it will be placed in all of the service centres and libraries because people were upset the draft version wasn’t more readily available in print form, regional planning manager Penny Pirrit says.
Over the past three months council has summarised and analysed the feedback and made proposed changes to the plan. Local board chair people and councillors have taken part in two-day workshops where they went over the planning maps involved.
‘‘We’ve had some really practical hands-on time look at the way forward and how [the unitary plan] will look in different communities,’’ Ms Hulse says.
The key issues raised by submitters were not unexpected, she says. They include height limits, intensification, character and heritage rules and the ruralurban boundary.
There has been criticism that the Auckland Plan Committee meetings have not allowed for community participation but no decisions have been made at those meetings, she says.
‘‘It isn’t a submission process at this stage. If it was, all 22,700 submitters would have to be given the opportunity to speak to their submissions. They will be able to do that once we get to the next stage where people can submit in a formal way.’’
The public will be able to attend the three Auckland Plan Committee meetings on August 28, 29 and 30.
Ms Pirrit says a hard copy of the amended unitary plan will be in the room for members of the public to see. It will clearly show the changes which have been made to the draft.
The meetings will go through the main alterations to the plan, as well as address outstanding issues. The committee will then decide whether to recommend that the governing body notify the plan.
There is still a lot of room for people to have their views heard before the plan becomes operative, Ms Pirrit says.
‘‘We’re fairly confident that by the end of this process we will have a sound document that then needs to go through formal submissions, pre-hearing negotiation and then the independent hearings process.’’
Penny Hulse: Time to contribute.