Need help understanding Auckland’s planning rules? The Auckland Design Manual is here to help!

August 4, 2017

Design for Auckland

Thinking of building or developing in Auckland? Having trouble understanding the planning standards that apply to your site? Want to avoid the need to apply for resource consent?

The Auckland Design Manual has created a resource to help those building or developing under the Unitary Plan, the planning rule book that shapes what you can build in the Auckland Region.

Our Unitary Plan hub provides clear, illustrated guides to help you understand the planning standards, and apply them to your site. We’ll even assist you in designing a development that avoids the need to apply for a resource consent.

Unitary Plan 101
– Your easy guide to understanding the residential standards.


If you’re new to planning standards, or you need a little help understanding a specific standard, our Unitary Plan 101 guide can assist.

The guide provides illustrated explanations of the core standards that shape what you can build on a site. It also contains useful quick reference tables for understanding the specific standards that apply in each of Auckland’s residential zones.


From building coverage, to height in relation to boundary controls, to daylight standards, we’ll get you up to speed on the core knowledge you need to get started on your project.


Building Envelope Checklists – Once you understand the standards you’re ready to apply them.


Our building envelope checklists demonstrate how to apply the planning standards to your site and begin designing your development. Applying the standards is an important step for any project, as they are a key shaper in determining what and where you can build. The checklists will help you to visualise what is possible and can assist you in designing a development that avoids the need for a resource consent.


We also have a wide range of additional resources to guide you through the design and build process.

Want to understand what makes a well-designed building? Need some inspiration? Check out our building design guidance and our extensive collection of case studies.

Unsure of how to turn your ideas into reality? Feeling overwhelmed by the building and development process. Our comprehensive guidance for developing new homes will step you through the development process, letting you know what you need to be doing at each stage of your project and alerting you to potential obstacles. From project feasibility, through to final handover, we’ve got you covered.

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