Objectives Print

Design Outcome

​​​​​​​Water sensitive design (WSD) is an inter-disciplinary approach to urban planning and development which provides opportunities for integration of land use and freshwater management and aims to protect and enhance natural freshwater systems, by sustainably managing water resources and mimicking natural processes. 

This approach will contribute to the enhancement of ecosystems and will maximise long-term environmental, social, cultural and economic outcomes for Auckland communities.
The objectives for WSD for stormwater aim to deliver the priorities identified in The Auckland Plan. Relevant priorities in The Auckland Plan are:


Strategic Direction


7 Auckland’s Environment

1 Value our natural heritage

2 Sustainably manage natural resources

3 Treasure our coastline, harbours, islands and marine areas

10 Urban Auckland

1 Realise quality, compact urban environments

2 Demand good design in all development

12 Auckland’s Physical & Social Infrastructure

1 Optimise, integrate and align network provision and planning

   2 Protect, enable, align, integrate and provide social and community infrastructure for present and future generations ​

Based on these priorities, a set of objectives has been developed for WSD. The objectives listed below are intended to be aspirational at the regional and catchment scale and achievable at the site scale. Note that a definition of WSD is given in the PAUP and included in Section A2.0 of this document.

Each of these objectives aims to deliver on the priorities for Auckland identified in The Auckland Plan: 
  • Reduce stormwater runoff - reduce stormwater runoff volume and peak flow to predevelopment levels 
  • Manage stormwater quality - manage stormwater quality to avoid adverse environmental effects 
  •  Minimise soil disturbance - minimise sediment in stormwater runoff, especially duri​ng construction, and protect site soil resources from modification 
  • Promote ecosystem health - promote the health of regional ecosystems and their associated environmental services through the management of stormwater at the catchment and site scale 
  • Deliver best practice - deliver best practice urban design and broader community outcomes as part of stormwater management delivery 
  • Maximise return on investment - achieve maximum value from stormwater management through the consideration of a broad range of benefits. 
The following sections provide further detail on each objective and the solutions available to achieve these objectives.​​​

Better Design Practice

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