Auckland Central Business District

Tuesday, 21 September 2021 - 11:00 am (CET/MEZ) Berlin | Author/Destination:
Category/Kategorie: General
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Aerial view © flickr.com - Craig/cc-by-sa-2.0

Aerial view © flickr.com – Craig/cc-by-sa-2.0

The Auckland central business district (CBD), also called the city centre by Auckland Council, is the geographical and economic heart of the Auckland metropolitan area. It is the area in which Auckland was established in 1840, by William Hobson. It is New Zealand’s leading financial hub, and the centre of the country’s economy; the GDP of the Auckland Region was $122.557 billion in the year ending March 2020. The CBD is one of the most densely developed places in New Zealand, with many commercial and some residential developments packed into a space of only 433 hectares (1,070 acres). The area is made up of the city’s largest concentration of skyscrapers and businesses. Bounded by several major motorways and by the harbour coastline in the north, it is surrounded further out by mostly suburban areas; it is bounded on the North by Waitematā Harbour, east by Parnell, southeast by Grafton, south by Mount Eden, southwest by Newton, west by Freemans Bay and northwest by Viaduct Harbour.

The CBD of Auckland has been the leading centre of New Zealand’s business and economic development for nearly two centuries. The area of today’s CBD was the site of the original European settlement of Auckland, oriented along the coastline and then Queen Street, in a southward direction. From those origins, it has grown progressively, and become much more densely built-up, now being an area of high-rise buildings mainly used for commercial and retail uses. It has the highest concentration of arts, culture and higher education institutions and venues in the country. Some commentators have noted that the recent decades have not been kind to the aesthetics and the community values of the inner city. The demolishing of many older buildings, often the prerequisite for low-quality or uninspired new office and residential developments, is considered by them to be due to a combination of developers uninterested in long-term outcomes and Council planning direction being too weak. In an attempt to reverse the decline of aesthetics in the CBD, previous Auckland City Councils and the current unitary Auckland Council have instigated several urban regeneration schemes. These include the recent redevelopment of Aotea Square in 2010 and the upgrade of Saint Patrick’s Square in 2009. The area east of the Britomart Transport Centre is currently undergoing major changes, with the development of new commercial buildings, development of public spaces and restoration of several heritage buildings. Another major regeneration scheme currently underway is the redevelopment of Wynyard Quarter, which involves replacing industrial facilities covering a large portion of the CBD waterfront with residential or commercial buildings and public spaces. The Auckland CBD is one of the few places in New Zealand that has skyscraper-sized buildings, such as the Vero Centre, Commercial Bay (skyscraper), ANZ Centre or the Metropolis, with the Sky Tower rising above them.

Auckland Ferry Terminal from Harbour © Alexander Klink/cc-by-3.0 Dilworth Building on Queen Street © Ingolfson Residential highrise © Ingolfson Symonds Street overlooking the Auckland University of Technology (middle) and the University of Auckland (right) © Mk6aizsc/cc-by-sa-4.0 Auckland CBD Skyline as seen from Devonport © DXR/cc-by-sa-4.0 Aerial view © flickr.com - Craig/cc-by-sa-2.0
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Symonds Street overlooking the Auckland University of Technology (middle) and the University of Auckland (right) © Mk6aizsc/cc-by-sa-4.0
Residential high-density buildings constructed within the last decade have helped to increase the population living in the CBD to around 40,000 (2010 estimate) from earlier 16,000 (2004 estimate), all being growth from only 1,400 in 1991. Much of this growth has been driven by immigration to New Zealand, particularly from Asia, and the CBD is the area in New Zealand with the highest percentage share (32%) of the Asian ethnic group in New Zealand. Also striking is the high number of students (both tertiary education and overseas students studying English in one of the many institutes), making up 27% of all residents (2001 Census) and contributing to the relative youth of the city residents. With increasing population, available services have also changed – from only about one superette in the early 2000s, this has ballooned to one supermarket and 38 superettes by 2011. In early 2012, two major supermarket chains opened a branch in the city centre, with Countdown opening on Victoria Street in January and New World opening a branch on Queen Street in early March. However, the population remains highly focused on ethnically diverse, mostly young and childless residents. According to an in-depth study of security perception in the Auckland CBD undertaken in 2005, most visitors and locals feel safe visiting and living in the CBD. Police and the Council have in part ascribed these positive feelings to over a dozen safety initiatives undertaken by authorities (from alcohol bans in parts of the CBD to CCTV surveillance and street lighting measures). However, in spite of the general perception of the CBD being safe, there was a feeling that crime had risen somewhat in the last five years (whereas in fact numbers had declined). This was considered to be mostly due to a media-driven public image.

With 8,500 businesses, the CBD accounts for 18% of all businesses in Auckland City, with the largest being Ports of Auckland, and the largest employment sectors being financial services, business and ICT services. The CBD is also the largest employment centre in New Zealand, with around 65,000 jobs, representing 13% of the regional workforce, and 25% of the Auckland City workforce. Around 73,000 people enter the CBD every morning between 7 am and 9 am, 60% of these by car, while the total ‘turnover’ is around 270,000 people per day. In 2003 many large corporations were housed in the Auckland CBD. During the same year, an Auckland City report stated that the Auckland CBD, compared to several central business districts in Australia, had “a broader and more dominant role in its regional economy” compared to the economies of the Australian central business districts. The CBD remains attractive to shops, partially due to the very high pedestrian numbers on the main shopping streets like Queen Street, where footfalls are estimated to be up to 10 times as high as on Broadway in Newmarket, seen as Queen Street’s closest rival. Auckland CBD has a higher share of employment in large firms than other areas in Auckland. Over half of the large firms in Auckland CBD are in office-based sectors (such as property and business services and finance and insurance) and are in the Downtown and Waterfront areas of the CBD. In 2004 Auckland CBD had 72,540 employees and 9125 businesses. 2006 Auckland CBD had 78,444 employees and 9,461 businesses.

Read more on Wikipedia Auckland Central Business District (Smart Traveler App by U.S. Department of State - Weather report by weather.com - Global Passport Power Rank - Democracy Index - GDP according to IMF, UN, and World Bank - Global Competitiveness Report - Corruption Perceptions Index - Press Freedom Index - World Justice Project - Rule of Law Index - UN Human Development Index - Global Peace Index - Travel & Tourism Competitiveness Index). Photos by Wikimedia Commons. If you have a suggestion, critique, review or comment to this blog entry, we are looking forward to receive your e-mail at comment@wingsch.net. Please name the headline of the blog post to which your e-mail refers to in the subject line.






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