Sunfield - Australasia’s first 15-minute, solar powered, car-less community in Auckland


Two New Zealand firsts – lodgement of the first Specified Development Project under the new Urban Development Act for the first 15-minute neighbourhood in Australasia. Winton is proud to introduce Sunfield, an innovatively designed community in Auckland focused on people, not cars.

Sunfield is a radical new approach to urban living, where most roads are replaced with shared green spaces, planting and housing, with solar energy powering the community. At a time when there is an acute housing shortage in New Zealand, the 5,000 additional homes will deliver critical supply to an area experiencing rapidly rising demand. Without the need for roads, parking, driveways and garages, Sunfield stands to offer more homes at roughly 20% less than the average Auckland house price, and a more affordable way of life, with significantly less impact on the planet.

To enable this new sustainable way of living, Winton has created a community based on the urban design principle of a 15-minute neighbourhood, where residents can live and work locally. The majority of day-to-day needs will be met within a 15-minute walk or bike from home, including employment opportunities, education, recreation, retail, and convenience.

“Sunfield is more than a housing development; it is a way of life. Integrated into the masterplan are 250,000 sqm of employment, healthcare and education space, enabling at least 11,000 permanent jobs within Sunfield”, Chris Meehan, Winton CEO commented. 

The smart design of Sunfield, and link to Papakura Train Station, facilitates a lifestyle where residents no longer need a personal vehicle, creating a community with 90% less cars. The Sunfield Loop is the primary movement route within Sunfield. It has dedicated lanes for each of the electric autonomous Sunfield shuttles, vehicles, walking and cycling. The fleet of autonomous shuttles, known as the ‘Sunbus’, will constantly move around the Sunfield Loop and to the Papakura Train Station, which is just 2km away.

“We do not have the luxury of time to meet New Zealand’s emission reduction targets to help limit the physical effects of climate change. We have to do things differently and the best way to lower New Zealand’s carbon impact is to avoid emissions wherever possible - a community with 90% less cars, powered by sun and without gas connections does this”, said Chris Meehan, Winton CEO.

He added, “Drastically less cars means Sunfield emits about two-thirds fewer emissions from car use compared to a traditional development. With the Sunfield solar strategy, we avoid at least 3,000 tonnes of emissions from carbon dioxide a year, equivalent to planting 140,000 trees. With robust and storable renewable electricity onsite, we have also excluded gas connections from Sunfield, acknowledging that solar generation is a far more renewable energy source than gas”.

”We are proud to become the first applicant under the new Urban Development Act for our world-leading Sunfield project, in New Zealand. With the Government’s support and using technology available today, Winton is ready to start straight away to add much-needed housing for 15,000    New Zealanders in a radically more sustainable way. We are ready to go, able to fund all infrastructure requirements and hope to commence construction in the coming months”, Mr Meehan concluded.


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For more information about the new Urban Development Act:

Kāinga Ora welcomes Urban Development Act :: Kāinga Ora – Homes and Communities

Urban Development Act | Te Tūāpapa Kura Kāinga - Ministry of Housing and Urban Development