Sustainable land use and transport planning in urban areas : a case study of Auckland: : This thesis is submitted in partial fulfulment of the requirements for the degree of Master of Resource and Environmental Planning at Massey University
In an urban context, our foremost duty as planners is to develop the planning principles and techniques which have predictive value and guide policy with relation to form, function and operation of cities and metropolitan areas. This thesis examines ways of developing sustainable plans for land use and transportation in major urban areas, with special reference to Auckland, New Zealand. This has been done first, by reviewing prescriptions of urban form, land use and transportation in order to identify sustainability criteria. The key parameters of sustainability are considered with reference to the Resource Management Act (1991), which provides the framework for promoting sustainable management in urban areas in New Zealand. Second, indicators of urban sustainability for a range of international cities have been compared with figures for Wellington and Auckland urban areas. Finally, the criteria drawn from international literature have been applied to urban land use and transportation planning in the Auckland area, starting from mid-1950's. This review of transport planning studies demonstrates a major shift from policies for highway development and urban expansion to policies for more compact urban form, more efficient land use, and sustainable transportation. Traditional land use and transportation planning is based on the principle of low density, high speed motorways which foster private transport. Now is the appropriate time to move away from a traditional planning approach and follow approaches which foster sustainability. This means changing traditional transport planning. The focus of transport plans has been traditionally an efficiency and speed. This contrasts with the move toward sustainability. The way land is used in urban areas is central to sustainable management. In existing major cities, the pursuit of sustainability is limited because of the limited development options available. Change can be pursued, however, by such things as shift in land use patterns, infill development, subdivision, changes toward high density residential areas along major corridors, and converting land uses on major corridors to multi-family residential and mixed land use activities. The thesis reviews the historic shifts which have taken place in the priorities in transport planning in Auckland. It concludes that there has been a fundamental shift in post-war policy making in the 1990's. An interactive land use/transport plan based on the principle of containment and selective intensification evident in recent work is likely to be the most appropriate model of sustainable development for Auckland. However, it will be a considerable time, before significant changes can be brought about by this strategy alone.