Utopia, you are standing in it!

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There has been an unexpected outbreak of political courage on the left of New Zealand politics.

The Labour Party wants to crash housing prices by not only abolishing the Auckland urban limit, but ensuring councils can fund the necessary infrastructure to bring new land to the market:

Labour will remove the Auckland urban growth boundary and free up density controls. This will give Auckland more options to grow, as well as stopping land bankers profiteering and holding up development. New developments, both in Auckland and the rest of New Zealand, will be funded through innovative infrastructure bonds.

In response, the Greens want to take on the inner city NIMBYs by greatly increasing housing density and new developments in their pristine suburbs

Like Labour, we believe that people should have a choice about where they live. But a lot of people want to live close to the central city where they work or study. That means delivering more high-quality, inner city housing options, not endless sprawling new suburbs.

It’s often easier and cheaper to revitalise central suburbs than it is to build new suburbs on the city fringes. Infrastructure for new sprawling subdivisions is very expensive.

This outbreak of courage is surprising after the resolute opposition of these parties to any reform of the Resource Management Act to loosen up the land supply.

It is a breakthrough nonetheless because at least the Labour Party admits that housing affordability is about increasing land supply by removing the Auckland urban limit.

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