Urban regeneration on steroids - Lead Alliance

Civil EngineeringPlanningLand DevelopmentDevelopment AdvisorySurveyingStructural Engineering Three Waters
Aerial view of the Kāinga Ora-Homes and Communities' Auckland Housing Programme, which offers affordable housing, as part of the LEAD Alliance delivered by Harrison Grierson.

With a shortage of affordable housing driving up house prices and rent, over 300,000 New Zealand families are living in unacceptable housing conditions. That’s a figure we couldn’t ignore so in 2019 we partnered with other land development specialists to deliver Kāinga Ora-Homes and Communities’ Auckland Housing Programme as part of the LEAD Alliance. We caught up with Harrison Grierson’s strategic lead Glen Cornelius on the programme and the benefits of an alliance approach.

"We’re delivering the biggest public housing change in Aotearoa New Zealand since the second world war. As an alliance, we deliver design and construction of new infrastructure and enable land for new homes,’’ says Glen.

‘’With the country in the housing crisis that it is, and migration only increasing, the Alliance will enable 30,000 new homes in the Auckland region by 2030.’’

‘’If you’re wondering how much space 30,000 homes takes up, it’s approximately 52 square kilometres – equivalent to the size of Hamilton!’’

Signing up for another five years at the end of 2023, we’ve already seen communities start to thrive in large urban regeneration developments across Auckland, including Northcote, Mt Roskill, Mangere, Oranga and Tamaki.

The programme

The Auckland Housing Programme aims to deliver more warm and dry homes for families in the Auckland region. The goal of the programme is to replace older state houses with a greater number of new and modern homes in partnership building on ‘brownfields’ land as we like to call it in planner-speak!

Brownfields is land that has been previously built on. The reason Kāinga Ora specifies brownfields as part of the Auckland Housing Programme is so that communities who already live in their neighbourhoods and have established communities, can continue to do so.

The programme also has a duty of care to these communities, including consideration of climate change and aging infrastructure. The catastrophic January 2023 flooding has shown the reality of brownfield urban redevelopment especially in low-lying areas like Mangere, Mt Roskill and Northcote is extremely complex.

The benefit of an alliance

The LEAD Alliance – which stands for Land Enablement and Development – is made up of Harrison Grierson, Dempsey Wood, Hick Bros Group, Woods, and Tonkin + Taylor along with Kāinga Ora.

The alliance delivery model is a relationship-style arrangement, that brings together the client and other parties to work together to deliver the project, sharing project risks to achieve the outcomes. Collaborative procurement methods are used for highly complex or large infrastructure projects like the Auckland Housing Programme that would be difficult to effectively scope, price and deliver under a more traditional delivery model. Improved efficiency and innovation can also be achieved. And there’s maximum flexibility across all aspects of delivery, enabling fast-tracking where necessary to meet time constraints.

What we do for the alliance

HG undertakes survey, engineering design, consenting, planning, and construction observation for LEAD.

‘’We’re coming full circle–- since our inception at Harrison Grierson 138 years ago, we’ve been working together to create enduring communities.’’

“We’re honoured to continue that tradition and be part of this important urban development regeneration,’’ says Glen.

Find out more about the LEAD Alliance.

Related projects