Incremental Strategies for Suburban Densification

  • YEAR
    Wardle, Tegan
    Marriage, Guy
    2018 Conference Papers
    Architectural Science: Architecture, Design and Environment
    Conference Papers


Sprawling, low density development dominates and destroys natural landscapes and productive farm land at the edges of urban centres. Yet, suburbs continue to grow outwards, requiring continual development of green field sites to keep up with housing demand. Additionally, existing dwellings are demolished to make way for new developments with minimally increased density, creating waste in an industry that generates over 50% of New Zealand’s landfill. In spite of this, New Zealanders’ reported preferences for stand-alone dwellings on private sections and NIMBY attitude challenge higher density settlements, perceiving them as less safe, less visually appealing and less able to provide an enjoyable lifestyle. This research addresses the need for higher density living within the Wellington suburban context, while attempting to meet these challenges through the incremental implementation of accessory dwelling units that fit around existing dwellings. The implementation of this strategy has been tested within the Wellington suburb of Kilbirnie through the dimensional analysis of existing sites and the iterative design of accessory dwelling units. From this, possible new levels of density have been estimated within various areas of the suburb to investigate the feasibility of achieving higher density by adding small scale dwellings to front, side and back yard sites.


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