News Archive 2018

NEWS: 2018

Home and business: Living in harmony

In a column in Architecture Now, Arthur Grimes, programme leader for the Supporting success in regional settlements research team writes about findings from a recent study his team has completed regarding what individuals and businesses prefer when it comes to locale. It seems that the things that make a place liveable and the things that make a place good for business are at odds. But can we have both?


Read More

Phase 2 investment process

Following renewed investment from the Government, Building Better Homes, Towns and Cities National Science Challenge (BBHTC NSC) is releasing its investment process for phase two. There is a research budget of up to $3.25m per annum to invest in research activities that align with the phase two strategic direction. The Challenge will invest in four research programmes of three-five years in duration with a maximum investment of $750km per programme per annum, except for the cross-challenge Kāinga Tahi, Kāinga Rua programme, which has a maximum budget of $1m per annum.

The first round of research investment in phase two will be a co-created, negotiated investment, building on the lessons of phase one. It will not be an open contest of ideas. Research ideas for phase two must be appropriately co-created and critiqued to ensure that they are well aligned to the Challenge vision, mission and strategic research domains. There must also be a strong case made to show how they will deliver impact. Building on phase one means that we build on our current strengths and relationships with communities and collaborators.


Read More

Solving urban homelessness with manaakitanga

Kāinga Tahi, Kāinga Rua Principal Investigator Jenny Lee-Morgan talks on air about her team’s research and why the work being done at Te Puea Memorial Marae is successful at getting people off the streets for good.

Te Puea manaakitanga tangata kaimahi – core team led by Hurimoana Dennis. Photo: The Treehouse Creative.


Read More

Rangatahi: Perceptions of housing and papakāinga

The Rangatahi Ahu within the Kāinga Tahi, Kāinga Rua research programme recently led three wānanga in Kaikohe, Auckland, and Dunedin. The Rangatahi Ahu engaged particularly with young Māori around their aspirations for and perceptions of housing. James Berghan, Maia Ratana, and Jackie Paul made a video summary of their thoughts after the last wānanga in Dunedin.


Watch Here

Red zone stories to be told via new app

While plans are being made for the future of Christchurch’s red zone, one researcher is keen to ensure the area’s past is not forgotten. Radio New Zealand Morning Report interviews Canterbury University’s Donald Matheson. Donald is a researcher in Building Better’s contestable research project called Understanding Place, and has developed an app that enables people to upload videos of themselves talking about parts of the red zone that are special to them.

Read More

Strategy for Phase II released

What will success look like in the long-term in the areas of housing and urban development after the next five years of research funded by the Building Better Homes, Towns and Cities | He Kāinga Whakamana Tangata, Whakamana Taiao National Science Challenge (BBHTC)?

Following the National Science Challenges midway review, Building Better is releasing its strategy for phase II, where our innovative research programme will help ensure that, on the occasion of the bicentenary of Te Tiriti o Waitangi in 2040, “housing shortages and homelessness” and “house prices and affordability” are no longer significant factors that negatively impact the life course and outcomes for New Zealanders, as they are doing today.


Read More

Amenities and the attractiveness of New Zealand cities

A new report by Building Better’s Supporting Success in Regional Settlements team, Kate Preston, Arthur Grimes, David Maré, and Stuart Donovan, analyses the factors that attract people and firms (and hence jobs) to different settlements across New Zealand. The team compiled quality of life and quality of business indicators for 130 settlements from 1976 to 2013, using census rent and wage data.

“Households and firms prefer different amenities, which means places with high quality of life often have low quality of business. For instance, households appear to prefer sunny, dry locations near water, while firms appear to prefer to locate in larger cities,” says Dr Grimes.


Read More

Building Better performing well, $24.3m approved for next five years

The Building Better Homes, Towns and Cities National Science Challenge is set to continue to develop and deliver world-leading research into our built environment.

Following the National Science Challenges midway review, the MBIE Science Board has approved Building Better Homes, Towns and Cities National Science Challenge phase II funding of $24.3M, bringing its total investment in the Challenge to $47.9M over 10 years.

The funding announcement was made by Minister of Research, Science and Innovation Megan Woods on 17 November, with this second period of investment to run from 1 July 2019.

The Science Board’s approval follows a positive mid-way review of the 11 Challenges.


Read More

Remaking community

Models of land administration often promote the formalisation of land under multiple ownership to a more individualised, Western style of tenure, such as the British system of land tenure imposed on a communal Māori society. However, the dangers for Māori land under multiple ownership are that Māori values might become diluted or even lost in this transition as social responsibilities become divorced from land rights. Recognising this, planners of some Māori land development projects have sought to reintroduce key communal or socially-based tenure principles to the planning equation. But what are those principles? Are they succeeding? Do some principles produce better outcomes than others? And why might they work in some instances but not others?

Building Better’s Next Generation Information for Better Outcomes researchers James Berghan, David Goodwin, and Lyn Carter from the University of Otago presented and published research into community land ownership at the Remaking Cities conference in Melbourne earlier this year.


Read More

Designed to disrupt: A digital tool for urban regeneration

Building Better’s Next Generation Information for Better Outcomes researchers Rita Dionisio and Mirjam Schindler discuss the new Envision Scenario Planner (ESP) in a column in Architecture Now magazine. The ESP is a free, web-based geo-spatial planning tool that uses digital, evidence-based information to assist the exploration of urban regeneration scenarios at a neighbourhood level.

The ESP was nominated as one of three finalists in the Environment and Sustainability category at the Asia-Pacific Spatial Excellence Awards held at Te Papa in Wellington in October, and it has recently received high praise for the way it embeds sustainability at every level. It was created to help planners and decision-makers assess the impact that different urban regeneration scenarios, building typologies, and open spaces will have on a range of outcomes.


Read More

Resilience and housing markets

Research has found that some groups are inadvertently privileged in the housing market by existing resilience policy. Building Better’s Improving the architecture of decision-making Principal Investigator, Dr Iain White, and colleague Dr Graham Squires have published a report on resilience and housing markets in a top international journal, Land Use Policy. The report, Resilience and housing markets: Who is it really for?, examines how resilience theory and rhetoric relating to the economy and housing markets has been translated into policy and practice. The research includes a case study of Auckland, with a nationally dominant housing market and high unaffordability.

“By bringing these selectivities and limits to light we argue for a shift in focus away from an institutional frame to one with a deeper understanding of both the balance of an economy and the wider forces that create and reproduce housing markets.”


Read More

Action-packed month for New Zealand’s housing sector

Throughout November, planners, policymakers and the public will gather around the country to look at how to plan and build in ways that create more connected communities.

This month Building Better Homes, Towns and Cities (BBHTC) – He Kāinga Whakamana Tangata, Whakamana Taiao – is sponsoring a number of key events to inform how we deliver affordable, healthy homes, create attractive, functional urban neighbourhoods and build Māori housing.


Read More

Cultural landscape approach to design at ICOMOS

Integrating Kaupapa Māori and Te Aranga design principles into design processes was the theme of a paper presented by Building Better researchers Jacqueline Paul and Jade Kake at the ICOMOS 2018 conference in Suva, Fiji earlier this month. The aim of the conference was to share knowledge, celebrate the rich culture of the Pacific, and discuss common issues of heritage conservation across the region.

Jade reflected on her experiences of the conference, finding some presentations troubling, while others were uplifting.


Read More

Renting for the over 65s

Dr Kay Saville-Smith discusses the burgeoning renters sector on Radio New Zealand’s Lately with Karyn Hay, predicting that in 20 years’ time more than half of those over 65 will be renting – and even now many are turning to flatting.


Listen Here

Virtual reality for urban design decisions

A new study by Building Better Shaping Places: Future Neighbourhoods research team members Prof. Marc Aurel Schnabel and Shuva Chowdhury investigates using virtual reality (VR) to create user-friendly interfaces to generate and visualise urban form. Typically, current urban design processes can’t visualise urban form in real time during the decision-making stage. Virtual environment design instruments offer a realm to generate, visualise and analyse urban form. The researchers believe that engaging stakeholders using a VR design platform can reduce the gap between design intent and design outcomes leading to a more favourable design process.


Read More

Concepts of Neighbourhood: A Review of the Literature

The Shaping places: Future Neighbourhoods research programme is focused on researching liveable and well-designed neighbourhoods, including houses, which contribute to successful towns and cities. It is seeking to develop our understanding of the principles and processes that create more successful neighbourhoods. This includes both the physical and social structure of neighbourhoods. Within this context, researcher Dr Natalie Allen has developed a literature review. This working paper is designed to offer a frame of reference for subsequent research into New Zealand’s neighbourhood context and to provide an overview of why considering the concept of neighbourhood is important.


Read More

Marae model to support urban homeless touted as possible solution

The grass-roots model an Auckland Marae developed to house hundreds of homeless people is being seen as a viable way to deal with urban homelessness. For the last year, Te Puea Marae has worked with the Building Better Homes, Towns and Cities National Science Challenge on a research project to show why its transitional housing programme has been a success.

Dr Jessica Hutchings at the Te Puea Marae. Photo: RNZ/ John Boynton


Read More

Te Puea Marae model of manaakitanga ‘key’ to tackling homelessness crisis

NZ Herald Māori Affairs reporter, Michael Neilson, takes a look at what make Te Puea Marae special and outlines the Building Better research project into transitional housing.

“A homeless father carried his son on his shoulders from the opposite side of Māngere to Te Puea Marae, because he heard they might have space for them to stay.

“They did, and now they are two of the 332 people Te Puea Marae has helped find homes since it opened its doors to homeless whānau on July 24, 2016, in the midst of Auckland’s housing crisis.”

Te Puea Marae chairman Hurimoana Dennis said they had been successful at helping homeless Māori because they did not judge. Photo: NZ Herald


Read More

New research about homeless programme at Te Puea Marae

Māori Television’s Jessica Tyson covered research around Te Puea Marae and its work to address homelessness that was released at a symposium at the marae on 19 September.

Over the past year, researchers from the Building Better Homes, Towns and Cities National Science Challenge have been working with the marae to develop the Te Manaaki Tāngata E Rua programme.

The research aims to better understand why Manaaki Tāngata E Rua is so successful at supporting whānau Māori who are homeless using tikanga Māori.

The project is co-led by Unitec Institute of Technology’s Rau Hoskins and University of Waikato Associate Professor Jenny-Lee Morgan.


Read More

Te Aranga Māori Design Principles

Landscape architect graduate Jacqueline Paul (Ngāti Kahungunu, Ngāpuhi, Ngāti Tūwharetoa), from the Shaping Places: Future Neighbourhoods team, and landscape architect William Hatton (Ngāti Kahungunu, Rongomaiwahine, Rangitāne, Ngāti Raukawa, Muaūpoko) write on Te Aranga Māori Design Principles developed by the Auckland Council in conjunction with mana whenua to provide practical guidance for designers shaping the city’s built environment.

Hape – Protect Ihumatao. Photo: Yamen Jawish


Read More

Te Puea Memorial Marae to host hui for urban homelessness

Te Puea Memorial Marae and researchers from He Kāinga Whakamana Tangata, Whakamana Taiao – the Building Better Homes, Towns and Cities (BBHTC) National Science Challenge – will hold their first symposium about their research and share initial insights that centre on the work of the Marae to address urban homelessness. The hui will be held at Te Puea Memorial Marae in Auckland on Wednesday 19 September.

For the past year, the research team has been working with the Marae to co-develop the Te Manaaki o te Marae research programme.

Key to the research is to better understand why their Manaaki Tāngata E Rua transitional housing programme is so successful at supporting Whānau Maori who are homeless.


Read More

ESP finalist in Asia-Pacific Spatial Excellence Awards

A web-based urban planning tool, Envision Scenario Planner (ESP), developed by the researchers in the Next Generation Information for Better Outcomes research team is one of three finalists in the Asia-Pacific Spatial Excellence Awards (2018) in the Environment and Sustainability category.

The ESP tool allows local government and other key stakeholders to make informed decisions about the types of urban regeneration proposed. It allows planners and decision-makers to assess the impact that different urban designs, building typologies, and open spaces will have on a range of environmental and social outcomes, for example, carbon emissions, water management, jobs and social amenities created.


Read More

Building Better Homes, Towns and Cities reveals research focus

Building Better Homes, Towns and Cities (BBHTC) – He Kāinga Whakamana Tangata, Whakamana Taiao – has announced the key themes of their research in the year ahead. Continuing to address New Zealand’s housing needs, the National Science Challenge is digging deeper into housing for our ageing population and how we can build spaces for generations. It is also investigating the delivery of more affordable, healthy homes and the development of attractive urban environments with smart, safe, walkable streets. Thriving regions are also at the forefront of upcoming research, identifying how we can plan and build homes, towns and cities that create strong communities.


Read More

Intergenerational kaumātua village helps Kirikiriroa achieve age-friendly status

An iwi-led housing project designed to ensure kaumātua of Kirikiriroa are safe, secure and well cared for is being recognised for its role in helping Hamilton become New Zealand’s first age-friendly city.

Te Rauawaawa Kaumātua Charitable Trust provides free health, social, educational, cultural, recreational, housing and transport support services to those over the age of 55. The village was developed and is owned by Te Runanga o Kirikiriroa and is a kaumātua governed and led organisation.


Read More

Special Housing Areas: Spaces in Contention

A new report by Building Better researcher Dr Bev James considers public consultation associated with the establishment of Special Housing Areas (SHAs) in the Western Bay of Plenty sub-region, how it affected decision-making about SHA developments, and what it tells us about people’s views of our homes, towns and cities.

Overall, 69 percent of the 603 submissions on SHA proposals were opposed, and the remainder were either supportive or neutral. Those opposed cited a range of perceived social and environmental impacts. Read the report for more details on public perceptions of SHAs.


Read More

Designing housing decision-support tools for resilient older people

Our ageing populations make it critical that older people continue to live and participate in their communities. ‘Ageing in place’, rather than in residential care, is desired by older people themselves and promoted as policy in many countries. Its success, both as policy and practice, depends on housing. House performance, resilience, functionality and adaptability are all essential to maintaining independence. Three New Zealand research programmes have worked with older people to investigate issues around housing, ‘ageing in place’ and how older people and communities can become resilient to adverse natural events. Building Better’s Drs Bev James and Kay Saville-Smith from the Improving the architecture of decision-making team outline the research programmes in a paper published this month in the prestigious journal Architectural Science Review.


Read More

Impact of covenants on affordable housing

New Zealand has an acute and persistent under-supply of housing, particularly affordable housing. It seems that privately-imposed covenants on residential land, which are growing in number, are having an almost unreported impact on affordable housing and housing affordability according to a new report by Craig Fredrickson and Kay Saville-Smith from the Improving the architecture of decision-making team.


Read More

Ngā Kōrero speaker series: The housing crisis conversation

Video livestream from St Peter’s on Willis. Can the Housing Crisis be solved? What is Wrong with Housing? St Peter’s on Willis Ngā Kōrero speaker series asked these questions of the Hon. Phil Twyford, Minister for Housing and Urban Development and Transport; Dr Kay Saville-Smith, BBHTC researcher and Director of CRESA; Taimalieutu Kiwi Tamasese, Coordinator Pacific Section, Family Centre; and Paul Gilberd, New Zealand Housing Foundation. View the video link above to hear their replies:


Watch Here

Tāmaki Makaurau Cultural Landscapes

Podcast from Indigenous Urbanism: Jade Kake interviews Building Better Homes, Towns & Cities Kāinga Tahi, Kāinga Rua researcher, Rau Hoskins. “On this episode of Indigenous Urbanism, we travel to Tāmaki Makaurau, our largest city, to look at how Māori designers are working alongside mana whenua to re-shape the city to better reflect their unique identity and culture and to create a distinctive sense of place that benefits us all.”


Read More

Following the money: Understanding the building industry’s exit from affordable housing production

Research Bulletin: New Zealand’s housing under-supply is more than a temporary problem of adjustment associated with our so-called ‘rock star’ economy. Most acute is an under-supply of affordable housing. There have been lots of explanations proffered as to the reasons for under-supply and heated house prices ranging from claims of excessive building and materials costs to land-banking pushing up the costs of development to restrictions and costs arising from district planning and resource management. What has largely been ignored, however, is the NZ Productivity Commission’s 2012 report suggesting that the building industry has largely deserted building in the lower value segments of the housing market.


Read More

Tiny houses

A great article, outlining the tiny house movement in New Zealand, in the July/August issue of the New Zealand Geographic.

Building Better Homes, Towns and Cities National Science Challenge gets a mention for research analysing the property titles registered in Auckland over the past three decades, and the part that covenants can play to restrict smaller, affordable housing at a time when New Zealand desperately needs it.

The figures are still being finalised, but researcher Dr Kay Saville-Smith says it looks like about 55 per cent of Auckland residential titles in 2017 had a covenant – compared with less than 10 per cent in 1980. Very often, those covenants mandate large dwellings, she says.

“The worst I’ve seen is a minimum of 245 square metres. You’ll hear a lot about how affordable housing is affected by planning regulations; that’s a typical public narrative. You don’t hear a lot about the use of covenants – anyone can put them on, but they’re very hard to get rid of.”


Read More

Three new publications available

Three new publications are available from the team at Improving the architecture of decision-making. These are: Tenure insecurity and exclusion: older people in New Zealand’s rental market; Revitalising the production of lower value homes: Researching dynamics and outcomes; and Declining egalitarianism and the battle for affordable housing in New Zealand. All three papers were presented at the European Network of Housing Researchers Conference in Uppsala, Sweden, 27-29 June 2018.


Read More

Government Minister says elderly housing needs cannot be overlooked

What is the future of housing for our elderly? Minister for Seniors Tracey Martin weighs in on the affordable housing debate. Stuff article which includes reference to a paper written by BBHTC’s Dr Kay Saville-Smith and Dr Bev James, as part of a consultation process about the ageing population, highlighting how New Zealand’s future older population will mostly live in rentals, as home ownership rates have continued to fall over the last 15 years.

Image: Architecture of Decision-Making Principal Investigator Dr Kay Saville-Smith.


Read More

NZ ‘not geared for affordable housing’

Smaller housing developers are being locked out by bureaucracy costs, and experts say the government must connect people with expertise so affordable housing, particularly for Māori, can be built. Listen to Building Better researcher Ella Henry from the Shaping Places: Future Neighbourhoods team talking Māori affordable housing this week on Radio New Zealand’s Nine to Noon programme.

Photo: RNZ, Claire Eastham-Farrelly.


Read More

Kāinga Tahi, Kāinga Rua – Project Team Hui

On 17 and 18 June, Te Herenga Waka hosted around 30 Māori researchers connected to the Building Better Homes, Towns and Cities National Science Challenge. Under the banner of the Kāinga Tahi, Kāinga Rua strategic research area, and led by Director Māori, Dr Jessica Hutchings, the hui provided opportunities for kairangahau to share their ideas, methods and approaches on how to actively support Māori aspirations for long-term affordable and healthy housing that meets the needs of their communities.

Kāinga Tahi, Kāinga Rua project team. Photo: Desna Whaanga-Schollum.


Read More

Urbanism NZ Conference

The 2018 Urbanism New Zealand Conference held in Wellington in mid May was two days of high-quality content shared by expert speakers discussing the urban environment as a whole system of complex processes. There were a significant number of researchers from the National Science Challenge: Building Better Homes, Towns and Cities, both as participants and speakers.

Dr Rebecca Kiddle discussed The Death and Life of Great Aotearoa New Zealand Cities: Values and Justice in the Urban Realm. This presentation acknowledged the history and importance of the Treaty of Waitangi, how the Treaty principles are upheld, and the responsibility of practitioners to think about how their work takes on the role of the urbanist, as an advocate to support justice and equity.


Read More

Survey – Urban planning tools

Please help out a Next Generation Information survey project. The survey is to better understand the needs and challenges around spatial planning tools for New Zealand’s cities. The survey takes 10-15 minutes and is anonymous. It will be open until the 15 July 2018.


Read More

Why Waste Water?

What happens to the water that gurgles down your shower drain? For many people it disappears out of sight and out of mind, but not for civil engineers, town planners or those working in wastewater treatment. They are busy maintaining the intricate infrastructure that takes care of your wastewater so you don’t have to think about it. A blog post from Scion’s Lisa Tovey outlines the work of the BBHTC’s Novel Wastewater Processing team led by Daniel Gapes at Scion.


Read More

Unlocking transport innovation

A working paper to understand the regulatory and decision-making logics, processes and practices that determine the street design solutions that become part of our built environment and transport infrastructure has recently been published by the Architecture of Decision-making research team. Report authors Simon Opit and Karen Witten consider a proposal to install a novel type of pedestrian crossing, as part of a neighbourhood intervention, to investigate the architecture of decision-making that influences our urban environments.


Read More

Dr Kay Saville-Smith receives NZ Order of Merit

One of Building Better Homes, Towns and Cities lead researchers in the Architecture of Decision Making research programme, Dr Kay Saville-Smith, has been awarded the New Zealand Order of Merit in the 2018 Queen’s Birthday Honours.


Read More

Building Research Levy Prospectus 2018-2019

The 2018/19 Building Research Levy Prospectus is available now.

The Prospectus sets out key themes and priorities that BRANZ will be looking to invest Building Research Levy in. The focus of this Prospectus is a call for stand-alone research proposals responding to questions in three themes:

1. New technologies;
2. Lifting productivity; and
3. Innovation.

The process for receiving and assessing proposals for 2018/19 is made up of a two-stage application process.

The first step calls for expressions of interest (EOI) to be sent to, on the template provided on the BRANZ website, by 5pm on 22 June 2018.


Read More

Hobsonville Point high-density development

Shaping Places: Future Neighbourhoods Principal Investigator Errol Haarhoff is interviewed about the impact of high density living on well-being and housing satisfaction at Hobsonville Point.

The suburb is unique in that it’s the first of its kind: a greenfield built from scratch and founded on the principle of high density living, says Errol. And it seems to be working well.


Read More

Building Research Capacity in Communities

The urban environment has profound effects on people lives, yet those people often have little ability to influence that environment, either because public participation is limited to ‘consultation’ – feedback rather than ideation – or people find the process alienating. The research programme ‘Urban Narrative’ offers the potential to transform urban governance and decision-making to a model that encourages and values public participation. By supporting participation, Urban Narrative re-positions cities as ‘listening organisations’ that create authentic conversations and two-way relationships that gather, and act upon, local knowledge, ideas and aspirations. Read Urban Narrative’s Community Workshop Feedback Report out now.


Read More

London solution to Kiwi housing crisis

Dr Kay Saville-Smith from the Building Better Homes, Towns & Cities Architecture of Decision Making research team discusses partitioning homes to provide “new” affordable housing options with Rob Stock of Business Day

Brick houses in Muswell Hill, London, where many houses have been partitioned into individual flats. Image: Royalty-free for non-commercial editorial, by Zoltan Gabor.


Read More

The call of home for new graduate

Jacqueline Paul, from the Building Better Homes, Towns & Cities Shaping Places: Future Neighbourhoods Māori Research team, features in this month’s Landscape Architecture Aotearoa. Now that she’s finished Unitec the 24-year-old has just reached out to her local trust up North. Her next 10-year plan is to return to the Takou Bay area (where her father is from and grandparents are buried) to support her whānau plan their papakāinga (housing development on ancestral land) and marae development.

Jackie Paul at Te Ngaere Marae near Matauri Bay in Northland. Photo: Landscape Architecture


Read More

Data literacy for better research collaboration

To help system users of all levels with the fundamental concepts around metadata and geospatial data management the team from Next-generation Information for Better Outcomes have created a series of videos. They have also created a booklet outlining the basic elements to add to each dataset, and guidance on how to create metadata for optimal outcomes.

These have been created as part of a meta and geospatial-data literacy programme the Next-generation Information for Better Outcomes team are running in conjunction with Resilience to Nature’s Challenges National Science Challenge.


Read More

Goodbye Big City!

The feature article of the June 2018 North and South Magazine features the Building Better Homes, Towns and Cities National Science Challenge, in particular the Supporting Success in Regional Settlements programme. Arthur Grimes, Mike MacKay, Harvey Perkins and Director Ruth Berry are all interviewed for the feature.

Saying goodbye to the city

Would life really be better in a small town? Joanna Wane asks what you should weigh up before you book a one-way ticket to the country.

Making tracks to Wairarapa

With Wellington house prices booming, more people are forging new lives across the Rimutakas. Mike White checks out Featherston on the Wairarapa Line.


Read More

Autonomous vehicles and urban environments

Imagine a world where driving is no longer a useful skill. It might be a world in which people walk, cycle, and use a shared fleet of electric autonomous vehicles to get around. There might be no private cars or parking, more efficient land use, more affordable urban housing, and built environments that better promote community. In this world, adults seamlessly maintain their social connections and activities outside the home as they age.

Click on the “read more” link below for the second edition report, Think Piece: Autonomous vehicles and future urban environments: Exploring implications for wellbeing in an ageing society.

Photo reproduced with permission from ohmio Automotion Ltd/HMI Technologies.


Read More

Vicious to Virtuous Homes and Cities in an Ageing New Zealand

Two new presentations are available from Building Better National Science Challenge researcher Dr Kay Saville-Smith. They are An Eco-response to Housing Under-Supply, Costly Cities and Our Need for Affordable Housing – ADUs and Partitioning, a presentation to the Guaranteeing Healthy Homes – The Eco Design Advisor Conference 2018, held in Wellington, and Vicious to Virtuous Homes and Cities in an Ageing New Zealand – Hard and Soft Design, a presentation to the Room to Region: Age-Friendly Environmental Design and Planning in the Western Asia-Pacific Symposium, held in mid-March at the Kyushu University, Fukuoka, Japan.

Study casts doubt on effectiveness of Special Housing Areas in Tauranga

Building Better National Science Challenge researcher Dr Bev James has studied the 15 SHAs in the Tauranga and Western Bay of Plenty districts and questions whether Special Housing Areas are actually providing affordable homes in Tauranga.

An aerial view of Papamoa East, where nine out of 14 Special Housing Areas in Tauranga are located. Photo: Andrew Warner, Bay of Plenty Times


Read More

Passive Low-Energy Architecture 2017: Design to Thrive

On 2 to 5 July 2017, Edinburgh, Scotland, hosted the 33rd Passive and Low-Energy Architecture (PLEA) conference. Cresa’s Kay Saville-Smith and Dr Bev James from the BBHTC Understanding and Re-tooling the Architecture and Logistics of Decision-making research programme presented a paper on Resilience, Ageing, and Adapting to Change. The pair writes that an ageing population coupled with environmental sustainability are two of the biggest challenges facing societies today. “Architecture and urban design are pivotal factors in the challenge of aging well. Population ageing is inevitable and irrefutable. The resilience, sustainability and functionality of our dwellings and the built environment are key to realising the benefits of the longevity dividend, of living well, as well as long. Homes in particular not only reflect the social and economic conditions of their occupants, but can also dictate them. They ideally, can meet the everyday needs and preferences of older citizens and their lifestyles, and additionally provide crucial protection against extreme events and other hazards.”


Read More

Building more houses does not make them affordable

Professor Laurence Murphy says relying on simply building more houses is not an effective pathway to generating affordable housing as the market is very good at producing market prices. He discusses the challenges of Special Housing Areas with Grant Walker on NBR Radio.


Listen Here

How we can build the kind of housing we want and need

If New Zealand is ever to produce enough affordable housing to meet the needs of low and middle income earners, such as service workers, teachers and nurses, it must take action using positive planning and investment.


Read More

Māori solutions to future proof housing

Jessica Hutchings, the director Māori on the building better homes national science challenge, spoke with Radio Waatea, she says her team has been looking at how to create culturally fit-for-purpose housing both in the regions and the cities where space is short.

She says housing is more than bedrooms, a roof and a place to put the car. “We talk about a housing shortage. We talk about whānau Māori being life long renters. But also in the Challenge we are really interested in supporting the well being of whānau into houses so it is not just about building houses,” Dr Hutchings says.


Read More

Mātauranga Māori provides pathway to future-proof housing

New research conducted by He Kāinga Whakamana Tangata, Whakamana Taiao – Building Better Homes, Towns and Cities (BBHTC) National Science Challenge – has uncovered traditional approaches to housing that stand up to climate change and strengthen communities.


Read More

Original Building Better Homes, Towns and Cities: Ko ngā wā kaingā hei whakamahorahora documents

Want to read the original overview and research plan for Building Better Homes, Towns, and Cities National Science Challange?

Building Better Homes, Towns and Cities: Ko ngā wā kaingā hei whakamahorahora (PDF, 9.5MB)

Building Better Homes, Towns and Cities: Ko ngā wā kaingā hei whakamahorahora – Appendices (PDF, 6MB)


Read More

Jacqueline Paul – delegate at the UN 2018 Winter Youth Assembly

Jacqueline Paul (Ngāti Tūwharetoa, Ngāpuhi, Kahungunu) is part of the Building Better Homes, Towns & Cities Shaping Places: Future Neighbourhoods Māori Research team. She was a delegate at the UN 2018 Winter Youth Assembly from 14 to 16 February in New York. This Youth Assembly is a platform to elevate the voices of young people in international dialogues, empower youth to advocate for future generations, and mobilize youth as agents of impactful change. Jacqueline’s participation in this assembly was supported by the Challenge.


Read More

Think Tank hui aims at visible and disruptive contribution to housing debate

Making a highly visible and disruptive contribution to the housing, urban design, and planning debate was the aim of a Māori Housing Think Tank hui, convened on 24 January to establish a kaupapa Māori research programme for the ‘Kāinga Tahi, Kāinga Rua’ research area.


Read More