Urban village : exploring synergies between affordability and sustainability
Permanent link to Research Bank record:http://hdl.handle.net/10652/1432
The stand alone suburban dwelling is no longer suitable for our steadily growing population, changing urban demographics, lifestyle preferences and the rising economic and ecological cost of excessive commuting. The push toward the intensification of our cities presents an opportunity to increase current supply of affordable housing. Therefore, higher density, inner city living is set to become a common typology within main centres throughout New Zealand. Many people are looking toward the purchase of multi-unit properties – which have traditionally been reserved for renters – as an affordable housing option to compensate for rising home ownership costs of the stand alone dwelling. This project looks into the redevelopment of a brownfield site within the inner city suburb of Morningside in Auckland. The objective here is to produce a mixed-use, medium-density housing scheme in which affordability plays a key role. Through research it has become clear that housing affordability is measurable when striving toward the inclusion of sustainability features. By lowering construction costs through building re-use and recycling plus the incorporation of energy efficient strategies and water management solutions the occupants are ensured to benefit from a significantly reduced running cost of their home. Quality design, security, privacy, and closeness to amenities all impact on peoples’ willingness to accept dense living environments. Each of these issues directly influence people’s acceptance of such developments. If people are satisfied with their living environment then they will take pride in it and, consequently, it will meet the general criteria for social sustainability. From research it has become clear that questions of sustainability, both environmental and social, must be considered as not only equally important factors, but also mutually supporting when seeking solutions regarding the issues of housing affordability. This project has extensively explored and investigated synergies between affordability and sustainability in the medium of architectural design.