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Building Today, Volume 1 Number 2 (January 1937)

Current Topics

page 28

Current Topics

Housing

Many Auckland architects have designs in hand for the first group of houses to be erected at Orakei, under the Government housing scheme.

Houses will be planned on the best modern principles, with attractive and varied exteriors and constructed of sound materials. Adjoining property owners should be well satisfied with the type of house to be erected. We anticipate publishing some typical designs in our April issue.

In this connection it is interesting to notice from the latest English periodicals that a good many controversial views on Housing Policy are now coming forward in the light of extensive experience. Conditions, of course, in the older cities are somewhat different from our own but nevertheless interesting; on the one hand we find those who decry the usefulness of modern multi-storey tenements with communal recreation grounds and gardens. On the other hand, we find those who are strongly critical of the individual cottage type of housing, contending that too great a proportion of the workers' income is spent on rent, leaving insufficient for the other necessities of life. It will certainly be interesting to see how our own Government housing scheme works out in actual practice.

The Coronation

We hear that the Auckland Branch of the New Zealand Institute of Architects is collaborating with other responsible authorities over the question of street decorations for the Coronation celebrations in May. A successful and attractive scheme is anticipated.

New Building Code

Comments from proper quarters have been invited on the New Zealand Model Building By-law (published last year), and must be forwarded before January 31st. It appears that some finality is likely to be reached in the near future on this all-important question of a Unified Building Code to be applied throughout New Zealand, replacing many and varied building regulations which have outlived their usefulness.

Rents

We hear that there has been considerable activity in the direction of new mortgages in recent months. Probably the fact that Auckland rents appear to be steady at a rather higher figure has stimulated the investment market. It is apparent that a substantial number of new houses is still needed to overtake the natural rate of increase, which was suspended during depression years.

Government Buildings

It is encouraging to note in recent years the tendency of the Government to take a pride in its own buildings. Apart from new structures, many additions and renovations have been made recently to Post Offices, Schools and other Departmental buildings. Particularly noticeable is the cleaning and repair work at present being carried on at the G.P.O. and the Supreme Court, Auckland.

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