Policy report

Why landlords and investors love the Auckland unitary plan, and why you shouldn't

Urban planning Housing Local government Auckland

The Auckland Unitary Plan has caused significant debate, which has brought to the surface complex issues around housing and class inequality in the city. This report investigates the political and economic aspects of the Auckland Unitary Plan in the context of historical and contemporary processes of capitalist displacement of the poor and marginalised. In particular, it looks at the economics of housing within the plan, and the politics that surround this. First, the report provides an analysis of the Unitary Plan before providing a critique of supply and demand as the economic foundation to housing policy. It then provides an alternative view to the dichotomous debate between ‘millennial’ and wealthy homeowners before suggesting some ways of rethinking planning as a tool for resisting capitalism and colonialism.

This report provides a critique of historical and contemporary planning practices and their manifestation in the Unitary Plan. It provides an analysis of the politics around the Unitary Plan and presents some possibilities for reimagining the planning process. This article does not provide a programme for planning a new city but is an attempt to lay the foundations for conversations to be had and political interventions to be made.

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