What role do urban policies play in enhancing the satisfaction from neighbourhood open spaces in mixed-use city centres: Lesson from Auckland

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Mixed-use neighbourhood and intensification have been widely identified as a positive urban strategy after research showed how this policy benefits the city and public, underpinning the concept of sustainability. In countries with well-established urban growth strategies, governments encourage people to settle in city centres as a mixed-use neighbourhood by considering new high-density residential development in this area. However, the design quality of these areas influences the residents’ satisfaction within their neighbourhood. Providing quality open space is one of the main influencing factors of satisfaction however, spatial elements of these qualities are yet to be developed. Auckland is the largest city of New Zealand and over the past 60 years, its City Centre has become increasingly populated and diverse (Auckland Council, 2012b). According to the Auckland Plan 2015, Auckland City centre will be one of the main residential centres of the city, and subject to this population increase (Auckland City Council, 2018). To cope with this demand, Auckland’s urban documents such as Auckland Masterplan promotes a compact city with a high-density residential area which can be perceived as a neighbourhood by the residents. Therefore, regarding the main vision of Auckland Plan to be the most liveable city in the world, considering residents’ needs and experiences, planning and designing open spaces is highly challenging. This paper presents the approaches to the open space in Auckland City Centre. The central question of this research is how residents’ viewpoints are coordinated with the relevant urban documents. To answer this question, content analysis of the main and relevant urban documents have been conducted. This research raises the issue of urban policies and the role this plays in the residents’ satisfaction with their neighbourhood open spaces.
neighbourhood, urban policies