Sadly, it is also a back door attempt to get intensification outside the provisions of the Hauraki Gulf Islands District Plan.
A small group of local residents has formed to develop a community response to the housing crisis on Waiheke which is resulting in homelessness, long-time locals leaving the island, dropping birth-rate, and insecurity for people of modest means who want to live in a secure rental house or purchase their own property. The Waiheke Local Board in 2016 undertook a needs analysis which showed that those in greatest need were people over 65, single people 55-65, low income families and key workers (teachers, care-givers etc). Essentially Waiheke, a community consultation document which dealt with over 650 individuals and groups including Ngati Paoa Iwi, further confirmed the community’s concern about the gentrification of the island and the need to establish an entity to develop affordable housing and a 40 Year Housing Strategy. Community Network Waiheke has also established the need for affordable housing with housing needs stated as the number one priority for community action on Waiheke.
The Members of the Waiheke Community Housing Enterprise Steering Group:
Paul Carew – Commercial Project Manager “Carew Associates”
Christine Gisby – Chairperson Direction Matiatia, Long time Transport Operator on Waiheke
Shirin Brown – Lecturer in Film at AUT and Local Board Member
Mark Inglis – Former property developer “Cottage Recyclers Ltd” and Local Board Advisor
The group is committed to establishing a community housing enterprise which will build and provide affordable housing for Waihekeans aiming at no more than 80% of market rents and assist people to get onto the property ladder using innovative shared equity schemes. Housing will be constructed in a manner appropriate for Maori with consideration given to the need for Kaumatua Housing, size and positioning of houses, location of kitchen, laundry and toilet.
- Who will provide the money?
- Who will provide the land?
- Where is the economic expertise within the group?
- Who profits?
- Who decides who is favoured for any available housing?
- What is ‘kaumatua housing’? (See below)
- Will race based discrimination be applied to tenancy decisions?
- How much money will be sucked out of ratepayers pockets instead of sucking rubbish out of drains to prevent flooding?
The group includes two commercial property developers. Their interest in the scheme is self-evident. Paul Carew is a recent newcomer from Christchurch. It is to be hoped that Mark Inglis is no longer a local board advisor or this would create a huge conflict of interest, especially as a local board member is also part of the group. Christine Gisby is well known for wasting ratepayers money to fund her journeying on the Direction Matiatia gravy train.
In the background is the well documented plan by Waiheke Local Board Chairman Paul Walden for the development of his family’s 51 hectare scrubland behind Trig Hill Road just outside the current Rural Urban Boundary. The Walden family submission wants to change the District Plan so that intensive development can take place on their property, including reticulation.
Kaumatua housing is the euphemism for intensification. It implies multiple dwellings on a single property or one large dwelling with multiple bedrooms to accommodate the extended family. Hands up all those who want to live next door.
The politically correct buzzword for the Goff mayoralty of Auckland is ‘affordability’, the latest in a string of ‘abilities’ that sees it placed ahead of the previous champion ‘sustainability’. The words are all meaningless in the context in which they are used. They are there to show how much the politically correct left ‘care’ - in other words virtue signalling. Mind you they care even more if there is a buck to be made for their mates.
Housing is a central government responsibility. Any initiatives by Goff or local politicians will be an additional burden on ratepayers. Goff is now bound to intensification through the Auckland Plan. This will do nothing to improve ‘affordability’. The policy has already driven land prices into the stratosphere in Auckland. The cost of building has also been driven skywards by Auckland Council through its expensive and tortuous consenting processes.
In other words Auckland Council is the culprit in increasing house prices in Auckland and will continue to be so as long as its policy of intensification, constricting land supply and hideous consenting processes continues.
Schemes like ‘Genesis’ are old hat. It’s not as if this is the first such dabbling by local politicians. They have a 99% failure rate for obvious reasons. If the group can persuade private landowners to donate multi-million dollar land on Waiheke to the scheme and private developers to pay for the building costs, and Auckland Council to alter the provisions of the District Plan, and neighbours not to object, then good luck with that.
What would be a sin of biblical proportions would be to force taxpayers and ratepayers into subsidising the lifestyles of others. Building an ark wont stop the flooding.