Building the slums of tomorrow
Picture / Herald
Glen Innes residents are protesting the imposition of "high-density housing [says the Herald] fearing it will be a social disaster, bring more crime and reduce private property values. "
Public concern about intensification within a 10-minute walk of Glen Innes town centre comes amid controversy over a regional masterplan to squeeze half a million Aucklanders into mostly apartments and terraced homes by 2050.I criticise the thinking behind that 'regional master plan' here as bringing East Germany to East Auckland in the name of trying to banish the car. Let me stress, there is nothing necessarily wrong with either high-density or low-density housing if done well (Georgian London and rural New England, for example, are very nice places to live): what is wrong is planners imposing their own choices on an unwilling public and on unwilling property owners; particularly when the model the ARC planners insist on imposing is a failed East European model that will ensure only that we are building the high-density slums of tomorrow.
What's wrong with leaving people free to choose for themselves the way they want to live, and free to build their choice on their own property (with all the necessary common law protections involved)? To do that we will need to get rid of the RMA, and of the country's planners. To paraphrase Voltaire, it will be a great day when the last planner is strangled with the guts of the last city councillor.