Rebecca Quilliam

Rebecca Quilliam is senior reporter at the APNZ News Service office in Wellington.

Accord aims to fast-track 7000 new homes

The Wellington Housing Accord aims to fast-track 7000 new homes in the city. Photo / File
The Wellington Housing Accord aims to fast-track 7000 new homes in the city. Photo / File

A proposed agreement between local and central Government will pave the way for an extra 7000 homes to be built in Wellington over the next five years.

The Wellington Housing Accord was announced today by Housing Minister Nick Smith and Mayor Celia Wade-Brown.

"We need to increase the supply and affordability of housing in Wellington," Dr Smith said.

"This housing accord will give us access to fast-track planning and consenting tools that will bring more houses to market more quickly."

Ms Wade-Brown said that over the past few years, fewer homes had been built than were needed in the city to meet forecast growth.

"I am pleased to be able to work with the Government to enable developers to support growth in Wellington. The accord is one tool to help the council deliver on our growth plans."

Under the proposed Wellington Housing Accord, the Government and council would work collaboratively to encourage a good supply of quality housing in the capital.

It sets a target of 7000 additional homes over the next five years. The accord was subject to formal approval and was due to be discussed publicly on Thursday at the Wellington City Council.

The accord would give the council access to powers to streamline and speed up regulations to manage development.

It would also help developers kick-start development so that they could build more homes quickly under the new homes, Ms Wade-Brown said.

"Affordability is an issue. Wellington's housing market is rated as 'severely unaffordable' by Demographia with the median house price 5.5 times the median income," she said.

"Increasing the supply of good quality housing will give people choice and make sure homes are more accessible across a range of different price points, from apartments in the city to first homes in our suburbs. There will be something for everyone."

Dr Smith said accords also covered Auckland and Christchurch and were part of the Government's agenda for addressing the housing challenge.

Where the houses are planned for:

• Lower Stebbings (part of Churton Park)
• Kilbirnie
• Adelaide Road in Newtown
• Johnsonville

- APNZ

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