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RMLA Scholarship Report 2012

Five applications were received in 2012.  The RMLA awarded one scholarship to Timothy Soloman for completion of his Masters of Urban Planning at the University of Auckland.

In his application Timothy notes that attempts by Councils, planners and developers to implement urban intensification have come up against considerable local resistance.  At the heart of these issues is the requirement for public participation under the Resource Management Act 1991.  Future moves to intensify must work to balance the democratic rights of existing communities to determine their urban environments; against the need for increased densities to reap the social, economic and environmental benefits of a compact city.

Timothy’s research seeks to fill an identified gap in the literature by examining local community experiences of intensification.  More specifically, it aims to find out more about how communities have been involved in the planning system in relation to urban intensification and how they would like to be involved, in order to reassess the nature of public participation under the RMA.

Timothy proposes to undertake a qualitative case study on three neighbourhoods that either have or are undergoing suburban intensification.  He believes qualitative case studies are the most appropriate method of research due to the complex nature of public participation and the need for a more detailed analysis of resident’s views on intensification.

After completions of his Masters degree, Timothy plans to move back to his home town of Christchurch to apply his passion for urban planning towards the rebuilding process. 

The selection committee was headed by Ian Fraser of the 2012 National Committee.  Timothy will receive a scholarship of $5,000.