Seeing how different planning rules affect urban form
The Auckland Waterfront CityEngine 3-D model is designed to show how urban form will change if the planning rules are changed. In creating the interactive planning tool, Boffa Miskell’s GIS, planning and urban design experts translated complex planning provisions and spatial data into a useful aid for decision-makers.
Auckland Council wanted to develop the tool for officers to use when considering submissions on the waterfront provisions in the Proposed Auckland Unitary Plan. Submitters were requesting various rule changes, such as different maximum building heights, but it was difficult to visualise these suggestions, given the complexity of the existing and proposed planning provisions.
Our GIS specialists used CityEngine software to model how the waterfront’s likely urban form would develop under existing, proposed or alternate planning provisions. The software is designed for evaluating different factors of city form but detailed programming was required to adapt it specifically for the Auckland waterfront context. Our planners and urban designers drew on their knowledge to ensure that the planning provisions and urban design principles, as well as place-specific information, was translated accurately into the modelling data. For instance, sites were identified where change was more or less likely to happen due to factors such as landownership or heritage status.
We met frequently with Auckland Council officers to ensure the Council’s needs were being met and that the Auckland waterfront model would realistically portray the existing situation and potential future development scenarios.
Auckland Council is very pleased with the model and are using it as a key tool in considering the relevant Auckland Unitary Plan submissions.