Akl housing designer claims top prize


An Auckland housing designer has taken out the top two prizes at the New Zealand Planning Institute (NZPI) conference gala awards in Dunedin tonight.

Harrison Grier was awarded both the best practice award for district and regional, and the prestigious Nancy Northcroft Supreme Best Practice awards.

The work on Scott Point in Hobsonville was "pivotal" in easing the growing Auckland housing market, NZPI chief executive Susan Houston says.

Around 3000 new homes were created in northwest Auckland as part of the project, and long-term development framework for the area has been established.

Auckland Council collaborated on the project and was also a landowner.

Ms Houston says it was achieved through "careful and thorough consultation".

"It has also been achieved by the use of innovative planning techniques incorporating precinct based planning, logical distribution of housing density, sub-catchment based infrastructure planning and development agreement for implementation purposes.

"A testament to the detail and depth of investigation, consultation and collaboration demonstrated by Harrison Grierson, is that the panel of Independent Commissioners decided in favour of the proposal without any significant modification."

The project's success has brought forward the estimated urbanisation date of Scott Point by five years and it provides "a unique opportunity to create a new urban development consistent with the Government's objective to address Auckland's housing shortage."

At the awards, Otago University planning student Bill Harrington was presented with the Wallace Ross Graduate Research Award for his post-grad work relating to irrigation.

Auckland's Meg Couture was awarded the Lance Leikis Awards for her outstanding achievement in project planning, which includes a number of successful water and transport projects across the North Island, while Otago University's Jordyn Landers won the Reginald Hammond Memorial Scholarship award for her work in her planning masters degree.