Saturday, June 15, 2024

Auckland Council orders urgent flood investigation

Auckland Council has agreed to urgently commission an investigation into the medium and long-term local and regional impacts of the Auckland Anniversary flood and what it may mean for planning the city’s land use and infrastructure in the future.

The Planning, Environment and Parks Committee has directed the Council to immediately identify the work needed to enable the council to consider any changes to its regulatory, land use, planning, infrastructure, and investment settings for the next 2024-2034 Long-term Plan.

The Committee has also asked for an urgent meeting with relevant Ministers on the planning, legislative and financial support they may support Auckland with.  

Mayor Wayne Brown says he is in support of the work.

“The devastation caused by the flooding in Auckland is not something we want to see repeated,” the Mayor said.

“Over the past few weeks, I have been out around Auckland inspecting damage, including with council’s building inspectors. What I’ve seen makes me certain this investigation is urgent and necessary.

“Our current focus is on preparing Auckland for Cyclone Gabriel and our immediate recovery, but this work is about making us more resilient for the future.”

Chair of Auckland Council’s Planning, Environment and Parks Committee, Councillor Richard Hills says it is critical work begins now to better prepare Auckland for future flooding events.

“While in some areas it may have been unlikely that any infrastructure could cope with the levels of catastrophic rainfall we saw on 27 January, what we can do now is look at how we can mitigate the severity of disasters like this on Tāmaki Makaurau,” said Cr Hills.

“We need to work with our communities and mana whenua on adapting our communities to climate change.

“This will be a significant piece work which will require the gathering of solid evidence, expert advice and engagement with affected communities so that considered policy decisions can be made for Auckland’s current and future generations, it will also build on our current climate, adaptation and water strategies on which work has begun.

“Given the scope of this work, there is no doubt we will need assistance from central Government to carry it out,” says Cr Hills.

The Planning, Environment and Parks Committee is expected to receive a report on the agreed scope of work and next steps on 2 March.

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