Many Kiwi-Indians own homes in Auckland and the Unitary Plan passed by Auckland Council this week is significant for the future of the city.

The new planning rulebook for Auckland, which will significantly change the city skyline and landscape in years to come, will come into force between September 19 and September 29.

The 7000-page document signals a new era of where and how Aucklanders will live, work, and play for the coming decades.

The new rulebook to squeeze in a million more residents by 2041, which tells people what can be built, where and how high buildings can go, was passed by the council on Monday.

If you have a “reasonable” patch of land in your front or back yard where you previously couldn’t build, things could change.

The Unitary Plan will allow for the development of dense housing in areas where previously, the council would not approve of.

Although, all is not set in concrete yet and there will be a submission period from the city’s residents.

While the council will be holding its breath and hoping for a minimum number of appeals to the plan, appeals of a geographic or policy nature could lead to administrative and complex challenges.

Auckland, New Zealand’s largest city, is growing at three per cent and is still in catch-up mode and would not get on top of it without working with large developers, bankers, funders, and central government.

The earliest the rulebook can be operative is the first working day after the period for appeals ends on September 16, which is Monday, September 19.

The governing body is not scheduled to meet until September 29 but could hold an extraordinary meeting anytime from September 19.


Wise call, Frank

The announcement by Fijian Prime Minister Frank Bainimarama that they will retain the current flag is to be commended.

He explained that the money, which would be used to fund changes to the flag, could be better used elsewhere, such as assisting victims of Cyclone Winston that devastated the country earlier this year.

It also had to do with getting national priorities right, he said.

Watching Fiji win gold at the Rio Olympics, and noticing how the current flag was embraced with sentiment and emotion, was also key in Bainimarama’s decision.

The proposed flag change was first announced in 2013 with a national design competition held in 2015. Twenty-three final designs were selected by the National Flag Committee.

New Zealand Prime Minister John Key recently allowed the spending of $25 million on a national referendum for a new flag, instead of spending it on more important issues affecting his people.