Tackling Auckland's housing crisis by rethinking urban design

As the housing crisis deepens and families struggle to find a home, developer Charles Ma thinks it's time to change the way we build.

The 28-year-old is the chief executive of MADE and the managing director of the Auranga development, a subdivision set on the outskirts of Drury West, set to bring 2650 new homes to the area in it's first stage.

However Auranga is a little bit different from your typical subdivision.

While some of the housing options available at the moment are reasonably spacious, ranging up to 260 square metres, it will set you back 1.2 million dollars to purchase that extra leg room.

So for many young buyers the smallest option priced at $590,000 is more realistic.

However, that also means living and possibly raising a family in a building measuring 90 square metres, roughly one-third the size of a tennis court.

But that's not a problem, says Ma.

"My generation doesn't need a huge yard in the back they need to maintain, they'd rather go out there, have a picnic, say hello to the neighbours.

"But a lot of people don't understand this fundamental principal."

To Ma, Auckland's housing crisis isn't about land, it's about design.

Because while some houses in the Auranga development have small footprints, with parks, coastal walkways and community gardens nearby there's plenty of space to throw a ball - just not on your own lawn.

"It's about encouraging people out to get out."

The result allows residents to live in high density, while also keeping a sense of space.

"It's a different way of living."

Read the full article on stuff.co.nz here
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