Open Access Te Herenga Waka-Victoria University of Wellington
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a one hundred and twelve hectare world : giving expression to a large subdivision

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posted on 2023-03-19, 23:01 authored by Schaffer, Lance

Wellington City is expecting its population to grow by 50-80,000 people over the next 30 years. Under the new draft spatial plan, rural area north of Wellington has been zoned for intensification. Churton Park will accommodate another 300 homes and a proposed structure has been released. Currently, there is a lack of experience-led design in subdivisions across Wellington. Fieldwork studies of various subdivisions in Wellington show that, on one hand, subdivisions and suburbs tend to discourage sociality. Yet, on the other, this research has found inspiring lessons from existing subdivisions. More so, the less-social tendencies are increasingly evident in newer subdivisions in Wellington.

In particular, the fieldwork has identified that pre-existing conditions can contribute significantly to the sociality of a subdivision. By extrapolating on and designing with the pre-existing conditions, a subdivision can begin to respond socio-experientially. This can only really be explored through site-specific fieldwork. The landscape exhibits a power in influencing your every move. This power will contribute to user experience and social behaviour in subdivisions. So, this research and proposal explores what can be learnt from existing examples. It draws upon this understanding to develop and experiment with techniques for how to intensify the social expression of a large subdivision through a specific example at Churton Park: a one-hundred-and- twelve-hectare-world.

Through experimentation, this research has identified that: (1) medium density housing should be employed in subdivision development to maximise landscape prioritisation, (2) that there is a lack of explicit attention to the sociality of large subdivisions, and (3) that pre-existing landscape conditions have a much greater potential to contribute to the sociality of a suburban area.


Copyright Date


Date of Award



Te Herenga Waka—Victoria University of Wellington

Rights License

Author Retains Copyright

Degree Discipline

Landscape Architecture

Degree Grantor

Te Herenga Waka—Victoria University of Wellington

Degree Level


Degree Name

Master of Landscape Architecture

ANZSRC Type Of Activity code

4 Experimental research

Victoria University of Wellington Item Type

Awarded Research Masters Thesis



Victoria University of Wellington School

Wellington School of Architecture


Connolly, Peter