At the Infrastructure
New Zealand Building Nations Symposium this morning, Urban Development Minister
Phil Twyford restated the Government’s commitment to addressing housing
affordability and supply challenges via the five pillars of the Urban Growth
- Infrastructure funding and
financing – to enable a more responsive supply of infrastructure and
appropriate allocation of cost.
- Urban Planning – to allow
cities to make room for growth, support quality built environment and
enable strategic integrated planning.
- Spatial planning to build a
stronger partnership with local government as a means of developing
integrated spatial planning.
- Transport pricing – to ensure
the price of transport infrastructure promotes efficient use of the
- Legislative reform – to ensure
that regulatory, institutional and funding settings are collectively
supporting the UGA objectives.
“This is a
comprehensive programme and represents the first system-wide attempt to address
the causes of the housing and wider urban development crisis.
“The proposed changes
are not inconsistent with National’s reform intentions when it was in
government. It would be great to see cross party support for change to finally
breakthrough the current stranglehold on effective planning, decision making
and investment in New Zealand.
legislation, principally the RMA (Resource Management Act 1991), the LGA (Local
Government Act 2002) and the LTMA (Land Transport Management Act 2005), has
disaggregated growth decision making, funding and delivery.
“In places where we’ve
had land, we’ve had no infrastructure. In places with infrastructure, we’ve had
no zoning. In places with zoning, we’ve had no demand.
“The Urban Growth
Agenda knits together the key elements needed to turn a section of land into a
new home or business, but only if it’s implemented in full and without delay.
“There is strong
industry support to tackle infrastructure funding and financing, and the use of
off-balance sheet project financing vehicles now needs to be ramped up and
Government commitments to introduce road pricing and open up land for
development are now overdue. These initiatives are critical to tackling
congestion, addressing land banking, reintroducing scale to the development
market and delivering affordable, accessible housing.
“New Zealand cannot
afford continued political stand-off on these important issues. Auckland alone
is 50,000 homes short of what it needs to house its population and that number
has increased 10 per cent in the last year.
“The housing and
infrastructure crisis will continue to get worse until a substantive change
agenda is fully implemented.
“To the extent that the reform
programme may cross Parliamentary terms of government, bi-partisan support will
be central to success,” Selwood says.
For further information and comment contact Stephen
Selwood on 021 791 209