With growth comes change. As Tāmaki Makaurau continues to grow change will occur to our neighbourhood and, there will be new places to live, work and play. Good design is critical as development intensifies and populations grow, and undertaken well ensures that what is critical and important is retained and respected amongst this growth

Design can be a positive tool to aid development and help achieve better quality urban environments by creating great buildings, spaces and places that are distinctive to Tāmaki Makaurau, designed from local values and approaches. To do this we collectively need to gain a better understanding about the different contexts and unique characteristics that make up the cultural, natural and built environments of Tāmaki Makaurau. 

The Ministry for the Environment defines character as "the distinctive identity of a particular place that results from the interaction of many factors, including built form, people, activity and history" (MfE 2005:2). For Tāmaki Makaurau the basis for our distinctive identity comes from the identities, histories, narratives and aspirations of the tangata whenua of the lands the city has been built upon. An ongoing dialogue and working relationship with Mana Whenua as iwi authority has enabled the development and use of the Te Aranga Māori Design Principles as part of design and engagement processes. These principles provide direction to influence and guide design process  for project teams to positively engage with Mana Whenua, and to work with their values, principles and aspirations to help shape the built environment and create distinctive outcomes. 

Positively working with Māori culture and embedding Mana Whenua values into design offers up significant opportunities that benefit all.  The Te Aranga Māori Design Principles (the Principles) are a set of outcome-based principles founded on intrinsic Māori cultural values and designed to provide practical guidance for enhancing outcomes for the design environment. The principles have arisen from a widely held desire to enhance Mana Whenua  presence, visibility and participation in the design of the physical realm (Te Aranga Cultural Landscape Strategy). 
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