Let’s make it good: getting the housing supply right
As we were working on this issue of the magazine, the government released details of its long-awaited KiwiBuild scheme, and plans to build 10,000 homes over the next decade. The plan has good intentions and a few good parts, and it has some weaknesses – I
Regardless, it’s likely that we will see an upswing in building over the next few years – thanks to a pent-up shortage of housing, changes to the Auckland unitary plan and now, KiwiBuild. In short, new housing is coming to a suburb near you, and it probably won’t look like houses used to. It’s a remarkable turnaround. In the August/ September 2016 issue of this magazine, we ran a special called Density Done Well, making a case for living closer together. Two years later, it seems that argument has been won – begrudgingly in some quarters, admittedly, but few would debate the need for density around transit networks and better use of precious city land. Now, the missing element to the debate is design. How will it look, and how will it be built? What should social housing look like? Will prefab finally take off in this country? And how good can a new-build, mixeduse apartment building be? Read on for our take on the task ahead – because the opportunity here is enormous. Let’s make it good.