1Introduction to subdivision

​​​​​​​​​​Subdivision is a crucial step in the development of Auckland's residential areas. ​​
Auckland is geographically a large city and is experiencing a housing shortage. Many sites across the region are large enough to accommodate more than one dwelling, which presents the region with an opportunity to build more houses without pushing the region's boundaries out further. The way a site is subdivided is fundamental to the quality and character of any development. It impacts on adjacent sites and the wider area, and creates long-term development patterns that cannot easily be changed. Therefore, promoting and demanding well-designed subdivisions is an integral part of providing for the high residential growth forecast for the Auckland region.​​​​​​​​​​

This section contains guidance on how to create a well-designed residential subdivision, and describes the quality of residential subdivision demanded within Auckland.

There are many factors to be considered in subdivision design, including stormwater management systems, road hierarchy, lot size and shape, street design and more. These factors impact upon each other and collectively influence a development's final form. The interconnectivity of these elements means that subdivisions must be carefully designed.

The guidance in this section applies to urban subdivision, not rural or 'lifestyle block' subdivision or infill. It also relates to land subdivision only and not internal building subdivision.

The subdivision section is organised around the six elements of urban development:

  • Natural environment
  • Movement networks
  • Use and activity
  • Urban structure
  • Built form
  • Community 

These elements connect to or affect each other within any site, development or setting. 

For each element, there is an outcome that every subdivision should aim to achieve. Together, these outcomes describe the multiple objectives that all subdivisions must consider. 

Other sections of the Auckland Design Manual also contain guidance relevant to subdivision design, especially the housing and park guidance sections.

A design statement will also inform decisions about your proposed subdivision, and is a requirement of many resource consent applications under the proposed Auckland Unitary Plan.

A design statement consists of detailed information about your site, and a detailed account of how and why your design decisions were made. The process of producing a design statement requires careful thought and analysis of your site from many different perspectives, and helps to achieve the best result for your site, the local area and Auckland.