Auckland ranked least-safe city in Australasia - new report

A new report has ranked Tāmaki Makaurau Auckland as the least safe city in Australasia as a crime wave continues to grip the big city.

The Committee for Auckland with Deloitte and Tātaki Auckland Unlimited released The State of the City report which found Auckland's safety ranking has fallen for the third time to the city's lowest ranking since 2013.

"Auckland ranks only 124th in safety [out of 195], marking a three-year decline and positioning it among the lowest-performing peer cities on safety and bottom within Australasia," Committee for Auckland director Mark Thomas said.

For many business owners, the drop in ranking will likely be no surprise as ram-raids and violent crime have dominated headlines in recent years with offences occurring most days in the big city.

Just yesterday Newshub spoke to a business owner fed up with the level of crime after a man with a large craft night fought a person and broke their sign in downtown Auckland.

Howlin' Wolf Cuts & Coffee owner Daniel Armstrong said every sign they put up has been stolen or vandalized. It's happening to every on Elliott Street, he added.

While on Monday four youths were arrested after a spree of burglaries and ram-raids across the city overnight.

Over the weekend, a staff worker was assaulted, and a man was critically injured during two separate robberies.

The ESR forensic team and police assess the scene at Chapel Downs Discount Liquor after a victim was struck in the back of the head by the robber.
The ESR forensic team and police assess the scene at Chapel Downs Discount Liquor after a victim was struck in the back of the head by the robber. Photo credit: Newshub.

Other weak spots the report found for Auckland included innovation which placed within the bottom five in the Asia–Pacific region and traffic. 

"The city's traffic performance, measuring commute time, ride dissatisfaction, network inefficiencies, and CO2 emissions, worsened since 2022 with the city in the bottom group of cities Auckland compares with," Thomas said.

However, the report wasn't all doom and gloom. Auckland came in 5th place for work-life balance out of 25 global cities measured, praised for its "relaxed vibe and friendliness", Thomas said.

The City of Sails also reclaimed its spot among the top 30 most student-friendly cities in the world, ranking 29th out of 160 cities, and ranked in the global top 100 sporting cities, ranking 10th in the Asia-Pacific region.

"Recent data also indicates spending by international visitors in Auckland's City Centre has surpassed pre-COVID levels for the first time since the pandemic began, and Ponsonby has earned the 33rd spot in Time Out's list of the world's coolest neighbourhoods," Tātaki Auckland Unlimited director of investment and industry Pam Ford said.

Auckland climbed to 9th place among 30 measuring progress toward a more sustainable economy.

"This reflected a commitment to improved construction and demolition waste recycling with the City Rail Link's efforts achieving 98 percent diversion from landfill during its development phases highlighted," Deloitte Future of Auckland Director Kate Sutton said.

"However, the city's lower ranking in overall socio-economic development is being impacted by household overcrowding, smaller numbers of electric charging stations and lower technology development."

Thomas said the first State of the City Quarterly update on Auckland, which is a collation of recently published indicators, indicated good progress was underway in areas where change is easier. However, more work by a wider range of those interested in Auckland is needed to address the areas holding Auckland back.