Tell your city councillors to say yes to more homes

A City for People is a non-partisan coalition of individuals and organisations working together to advocate for affordable housing in Wellington.

We’re asking Wellington City Council to make the city affordable again by making it easier to build new homes, in the right places.

Our asks

Right now there is high demand for homes in Wellington because it’s a great place and more people want to live here. But the supply of new homes is not keeping up with demand because the current planning rules make it too difficult to build. This means more and more people are competing for too few homes and bidding up prices – both to buy, and to rent. For many of us, Wellington has become a severely unaffordable place to live.

We can make Wellington a city for people again. We just need our councillors to change the zoning rules in the District Plan and make it easier to build more homes.

Contact your councillors today!

Tell them your story, and ask them to support our five asks. We’ve pasted a template email and their contact details below. Easy!

Email Template

Subject: Please vote for more homes in Wellington

Kia ora,

My name is [insert name] and I am a resident of your ward. I am emailing to ask that you please support making zoning changes to enable more homes in Wellington when you vote on the District Plan.

I love living in Wellington because [insert reasons].

But Wellington has a severe housing crisis. There aren’t enough homes for all of us. The shortage is making house prices and rents skyrocket. People are struggling and I would like you to do something about it. [you could insert a personal story here about how you specifically are struggling, like “I have had to move three times in the last three years because my rent keeps going up”, or “the house I live in is full of mould but I can’t afford to move somewhere that wont make me sick - I have no other options”].

The District Plan is the greatest opportunity you have to change this. If we make it easier to build more homes in our city, we can make housing more affordable again. I support the recommendations of A City for People. Specifically, that the council:

  1. Raise building height limits in the city centre or remove them all together.

  2. Increase what’s considered “walkable” from 10 minutes to 15 minutes.

  3. Recognise that the Johnsonville train line and the Newtown bus route are “mass-rapid transit” routes

  4. Apply the Medium Density Residential Standards consistently across the whole city.

  5. Keep special character areas the same size agreed to in the Spatial Plan.

These measures would enable more homes in our city, in the right places. I think it is better that we build new homes at higher densities in the existing suburbs where people want to live, rather than in new, sprawling suburbs at the edge of the city.

Plenty of us would be delighted to live in smaller homes if it meant we could live closer to the centre of the city. Changing to zoning rules would enable more terraces and apartments so that we’d all have more choices.

This kind of density done well would be better for the environment too. When we live in smaller homes, closer together, near to the places we want to go, we don’t need to use our cars so much, and we don’t need to use so much energy heating really big homes. And the council would be able invest more in environmental friendly transport options - like light rail, more frequent and reliable bus services, and cycle paths - because there’d be more of us using them.

I hope that, as my representative, you make sensible choices on the District Plan that I can support. I would like to see you take meaningful action on the housing crisis by changing the zoning rules and saying yes to more homes.

Ngā mihi,

[your name]

Emails like these are most effective if they’re personal, so don’t hesitate to edit and add to this template before you send it.

We’re keen to collect more stories from Wellingtonians about their experiences of the housing crisis in our city. Being able to talk about- and refer to- the experiences of real people can be very powerful. If you’re comfortable sharing, we’d love to be copied in when you email your councillors:

Councillor contact details

Not sure which ward you live in? You can find a map right here on the council website.

Paekawakawa/Southern Ward

Takapū/Northern Ward

Motukairangi/Eastern Ward

Wharangi/Onslow-Western Ward

Pukehīnau/Lambton Ward

Te Whanganui-a-Tara Māori Ward

Art by Erin Daily.