Dialogue around two new urban growth areas is now open following a workshop presented by Tauranga City Council.
The new areas include Te Tumu in Papamoa East, which is expected to provide about 7000 new dwellings, and Tauriko West, which could add 3000 dwellings to the city’s housing stock.
The Housing in Greenfields workshop yesterday afternoon featured eight speakers including members of council, council staff, developers, SmartGrowth representatives, MBIE and other interested parties.
Tauranga City Council city and infrastructure planning manager Andrew Mead says the workshop hopes to open the discussion around outcomes for the development and options to achieve them.
“Tauranga City Council needs 50,000 new houses to cater to the current population growth, we believe the Greenfield developments could provide at least 10,000 of these homes.
“As a local government we need to establish what role we play in catering to this need and how we can work with government to achieve these objectives.”
He says one of the biggest issues facing the Tauranga market is unaffordability.
“In Tauranga, the median house price at the moment is about $700,000. As a result 90 per cent of renters can’t afford to enter the housing market.”
A report commissioned by SmartGrowth revealed six recommendations for development including higher density, houses being more attached, the availability of mixed housing types (including type and cost), houses being fit for purpose and houses, having a good design and environmental sustainability.
The workshop also featured a presentation from Queenstown Lakes District Council, who face similar issues to Tauranga and shared their solutions to solving them.
“Queenstown, for a long time has been unaffordable, ranging back to around 1970. Nowadays we are still facing these issues,” says QLDC planning and development general manager Tony Avery
“The main problem we see is housing prices continue to rise and wages are not going up with these prices, this is a problem which is worsening.”
He also notes the district having a high growth area, limited development land, inclusive zoning, a dormant QLDC community housing trust and the rise of AirBNB properties as further issues.
Veros director Duarne Lankshear was one of two property spokesperson at the events.
His presentation explored several options for the development including housing size and affordability and utilising density.
In addition he also spoke about barriers such as unaffordability of housing, land holds and future property trends.
“Tauranga is one house cycle behind Auckland, which is one house cycle behind Melbourne and Sydney.
“You can’t expect a silver bullet solution or a significant reduction in housing affordability and the need for housing is a trend that can be expected to continue.”
He says a range of options are possible to help utilise land including duplex properties, two level properties and terraced housing.
“If you want affordable housing this is the typology you can expect. It’s not big but it is functional.”