Wayne Thompson

Wayne Thompson is a NZ Herald reporter.

Kohi apartment plan riles residents

Jennifer Duder wants to retain Kohimarama's seaside character. Photo / Dean Purcell
Jennifer Duder wants to retain Kohimarama's seaside character. Photo / Dean Purcell

Kohimarama residents say the draft Unitary Plan's proposals for five "walls" of apartment blocks reaching back from the popular Auckland beach on Tamaki Drive will blot out the reason they chose to live there: a connection to the sea.

A proposed terrace house and apartments zone of four-storey buildings reaches as far inland as the southern side of Melanesia Rd, covering five rows of existing homes.

It prompted residents who are in the rezoned area, Jennifer and Matthew Duder, to organise a campaign to defend the seaside-living character of the suburb.

They formed a neighbourhood group which took professional advice in preparing an alternative rezoning - a mixture of three-storey apartments and two-storey mixed housing to maximum heights of 10m and 8m respectively.

A submission was taken around by 20 volunteers and when the time for public comment closed on Friday, Mrs Duder had 713 completed submissions to deliver to the town hall.

"The plan proposes a significant increase in development densities and apartment buildings would change the make-up of residents," said Mrs Duder.

"There are lots who do not want to live in apartments - families, dog-owners, gardeners and those who enjoy private, open outdoor space."

The group had drawn Mayor Len Brown's attention to their case.

Council Unitary Plan manager John Duguid said: "We have heard the concerns some communities have in relation to proposed heights of their local and town centres and this will be looked at along with all the feedback over coming months."

- NZ Herald

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