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Wellington City Council has recently released a draft spatial plan for public consultation. “Our City Tomorrow: A Draft Spatial Plan for Wellington City” can be accessed at https://planningforgrowth.wellington.govt.nz/spatial-plan. Public submissions on the plan are open until 5 October. Within the draft plan are rules for housing development across Wellington’s outer suburbs. The proposed rules will promote greater housing density, particularly in areas deemed to be sufficiently close to rapid transit stops.

According to the draft plan, this will enable housing developments of at least six storeys within walking distance of railway stations. This includes Crofton Downs, Ngaio, Khandallah, Johnsonville and Tawa. As Johnsonville is deemed a ‘metropolitan centre’ the walking distance criterion will apply from edge of the town centre. That covers a sizable part of Johnsonville on both sides of the motorway, as can be seen at the link above.

Wellington is a growing city. Without question we need more housing to accommodate that growth. It is also inevitable that greater housing density will contribute to meeting that need. As will ‘greenfields’ development in the likes of Upper Stebbings Valley and Lincolnshire Farm. What has also been clear from previous Council consultation is that people are not of one mind on what constitutes acceptable greater density and where it should be targeted.

Underground infrastructure capacity is something raised often, along with the character of our suburbs and what people consider makes them desirable and more liveable. These are big decisions which could have a sizable impact on you. I encourage you to review the draft spatial plan and provide feedback.

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