How have the Principles been developed and applied?Print

Since the release of the Te Aranga strategy a number of follow-up hui were held to discuss the development of a more complex set of specific protocols and guidelines to inform Māori urban planning. Case studies continue to reveal that existing mainstream urban design approaches and guidelines (e.g.  New Zealand Urban Design Protocol) are insufficient in ensuring enhanced built environment outcomes for Mana Whenua and Māori communities. The Principles that emerged from the Te Aranga and other Māori Urban design strategy work were tested and refined through a series of large-scale urban infrastructure projects within greater Tāmaki Makaurau, the process of which guided further refinement of the principles and established widespread Tāmaki Makaurau Mana Whenua engagement, participation and critique.

An early project was the Auckland Transport Auckland Manukau Eastern Transport Initiative (AMETI). This  was the first significant post-Te Aranga public development in Tāmaki Makaurau, providing opportunities to engage meaningfully with Mana Whenua and to test the principles on a real project. Through the engagement process, the principles were applied and worked through to a point of appropriate design resolution in particular relation to the Panmure Railway Station precinct.

Significant value has been added to the ongoing development of the City Rail Link (CRL) project started  in 2012 with the Principles being formally embedded and applied through design processes. The CRL will link Waitematā station (Britomart) to the existing western line near at the new Maungawhau station (Mt Eden) and is a key project in an integrated transport programme to improve public transport as the city grows. As part of the Mana Whenua engagement process, each iwi wrote a Cultural Values Assessment (CVA), the majority of which referred to the Principles.

The most recent significant developments in the use of Principles has been with two transformational City Centre projects, Commercial Bay (a private development) and the Downtown Infrastrcuture Development Programme (DIDP public realm).

The April 2020 opening of the Commercial Bay precinct in the Tāmaki Makaurau downtown waterfront area is proof of the value that Māori design and the Te Aranga Principles bring to  a large scale private sector development. Commercial Bay is an important contribution to Tāmaki Makaurau. Early design and planning featured meaningful engagement with Mana Whenua, which confirmed the importance of the site to Mana Whenua. The application of Te Aranga Principles has resulted in unique design outcomes.

The DIDP has demonstrated the value in applying and refining the principles through a programme of large scale public realm capital works projects to be completed early-2021. An agreed aspiration of the DIDP was to lift the importance of public realm space for residents and visitors to Tāmaki Makaurau, which resulted in new ways of thinking about design for the city centre, expressed in the phrase “ Moving Auckland to Tāmaki Makaurau. Tāmaki Hērenga Waka, Tāmaki Hērenga Tangata”. This design principle provided the opportunity to move beyond the Te Aranga principles and to develop and utilise emerging Mana Whenua specific principles within the six projects that make up the DIDP. These specific principles were further refined by bringing Mana Whenua endorsed design, art and environmental experts to work alongside the design practices delivering the projects. The DIDP has demonstrated the critical need for Mana Whenua involvement to occur right from the outset to produce high quality, distinctively Tāmaki Makaurau urban design thinking and built environment outcomes. 

Prior to publication of the 2020 Māori Design Hub upgrade, the Mana Whenua Kaitiaki Forum (a Mana Whenua governance forum made up of all 19 recognised Tāmaki Makaurau iwi/hapū) notified Te Kaunihera that it intends to develop a set of Tāmaki Makaurau-specific design principles in the 2020/2021 period. It is expected that once finalised, these will replace the Te Aranga principles in promoting and considering Māori design within Tāmaki Makaurau.

The Auckland Urban Design Panel (AUDP) is a Te Kaunihera organised and funded forum of independent expert design practitioners that assess and provide guidance to large developments across Tāmaki Makaurau seeking to achieve high quality urban design outcomes. In 2019 the AUDP committed to supporting  Auckland Plan (2018)_outcomes to “Reflect mana whenua mātauranga and Māori design principles throughout Auckland” and the group’s membership included six Māori design experts nominated by Ngā Aho (network of Māori Design professionals). These members bring specialist knowledge and experience to assessing developments which have involved Mana Whenua engagement, impact on known features within the cultural landscape or where Māori design has been applied within the development proposal. The AUDP p[process is independent of resource consenting processes, and does not impinge on the role of Mana Whenua in providing its advice to applicants and Te Kaunihera.
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