Motorway and link road prompt new development bid

More than 1000 new homes could be built off Clayden Road if a plan change application is approved.

Concerns have been raised over plans that could see up to 1100 houses and six shops built on 102 hectares of land, north east of Warkworth.

A group of applicants wants to change the zoning of land, bordered by Clayden Road, Matakana Road and the Warkworth Showgrounds from future urban and light industrial use to residential, with “neighbourhood centre” shops off the Matakana link road.

The application by Warkworth Land Company, White Light Trust Limited, Kaurilands Trust Limited, Rob Mills and P & L Richards was originally notified in February, then re-notified in July due to “technical issues receiving submissions”, according to Auckland Council.

Council’s principal planner, Ryan Bradley, told last month’s Rodney Local Board meeting that the new motorway and the Matakana link road were putting the area under a lot of development pressure.

While Board members accepted that additional land was needed to cater for expansion in Warkworth, they said growth needed to be well-planned and sustainable, and they were concerned at the loss of light industrial land that could provide local employment.

Members were also concerned that building houses so close to the Warkworth Showgrounds and sportsfields, as well as to the Skywork helicopter base off Goatley Road, could attract complaints from new residents – a phenomenon known as ‘reverse sensitivity’.

Planner Petra Burns said even though there was existing use, that wouldn’t necessarily stop complaints coming in if the area was developed.

“This is something we look at now,” she said.

Board member Tim Holdgate called such people “Johnny-come-latelies”, saying they moved into a new area, got established and then started chipping away at activities that had been going on for years.

There were also worries that an area of open space had been moved from the north of the land in the structure plan to a spot further west, and closer to the showgrounds, in the plan change application. Mr Holdgate said they didn’t want developers to be able to use the showgrounds as excuse not to put in an open space. Louise Johnston agreed, saying open space was “gold” in a development.

Members voted to support the application, but expressed concern over the potential loss of light industrial land and requested restrictive legal covenants banning reverse sensitivity complaints. They also asked for footpaths and cycleways to be provided throughout, plus multiple bus stops, and for open space to be evenly distributed within the development. The Board also said that water supply, wastewater and stormwater runoff should be planned and managed sustainably.

Submissions on Private Plan Change 40 are now closed and a hearing will be held in the Auckland Council chamber at 50 Centreway Road, Orewa on October 5, 9 and 12, starting at 9.30am each day.

Info: Search for PC 40 Warkworth at

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