A Maori word has been added to the name of a development agency for the Super City at the eleventh hour.

Development Auckland, a council-controlled organisation starting business today, has been renamed Panuku Development Auckland.

Panuku means to "move on" or "move forward" and conveys the concept of dynamism and building towards excellence, said a press release.

"It has been likened to the motion of a waka that requires skill to navigate and teamwork to propel," the release said.


Howick councillor Dick Quax said he had no idea what panuku meant and neither would the vast majority of Aucklanders.

"There has been no input from councillors and council - the sole shareholder of the new development company.

"Other council-controlled organisations (CCOs) describe in plain language what the core function is - Watercare, Auckland Transport, Waterfront Auckland, Auckland Council Property Limited (ACPL).

"The majority of Auckland people will have no clue what this CCO's functions are from its name," said Mr Quax.

Panuku Development Auckland is a merger of Waterfront Auckland and ACPL.

Until yesterday, the new urban regeneration agency was referred to as Development Auckland.

North Shore councillor George Wood said it was the first he had heard of the name and he was not impressed. He reckoned that would be the case for many Aucklanders.

"Anyone reading that name will not associate it with an organisation of Auckland Council that has so much riding on its success in getting development expedited," he said.

Last night, no one from the new CCO could be reached for comment about the new name.

Panuku Development Auckland will be headed by former Waterfront Auckland boss John Dalzell in an interim chief executive role and the 10-strong board will be chaired by former ACPL chairman Sir John Wells.

This morning, North Shore councillor Chris Darby said he only learned of the new name yesterday.

"I don't have an objection to using Te Reo in the names of government and local government agencies but I do object to elected members not being given the opportunity to consider and confirm those names, after all they are our CCOs.

"If there is to be any degree of Public Display of Affection for such a name council needs to be less Pretty Damned Arrogant about how we go about naming these publicly owned entities," he said.

Mr Darby said Renew Auckland washis pick but the chance to put that option never arrived as the working title Development Auckland (DA) got a life of its own and became the mantra.

Albert-Eden Local Board chairman Peter Haynes said the liked the new name.

In response to comments from Mr Quax he said: "I guess some people have never accepted that Te Reo is an official language of New Zealand."