What are apartments?
The term ‘apartment building’ refers to a multi-storey building that is primarily residential in use and that has individual residential units (apartments), on all or most floors. In certain locations, such as town and metro centres, apartment buildings may have commercial uses on the ground and lower floors.
One of the primary characteristics that define apartment buildings is the horizontal separation of residential units across different floors. This distinguishes apartment buildings from terraced houses, where individual residential units are separated by vertical party walls.
While apartments are separated horizontally, it is possible for an individual apartment to be arranged over more than one level.
Apartments can share outdoor space and car parking. Car parking associated with the building is often located in a basement, or undercroft, and/or behind other uses ("sleeved") on the ground floor, or on levels above the ground floor.
Why choose apartments?
Apartment buildings have a number of benefits, including:
- Opportunities for increased residential densities
- Reduced distances between residential and commercial uses
- Placing more people within easy walking distance of services
- Supporting pedestrian and bicycle-friendly environments
Location of apartment developments
Apartments can occur in a number of zones. You will need to consult the Auckland Unitary Plan to check the appropriate controls for your site.
Ideally apartment developments are located in or near town centres to:
- reduce urban sprawl
- meet increased demand for accommodation close to services and amenities
- increase demand and support for local businesses
- reduce transport and commute distances and costs
- increase the activity and vibrancy of streets
- contribute to a safer environment by combining different uses used at different times of the day