|dc.description.abstract||This study of the landscape of port waterfronts is appropriate because, after the culmination of perhaps several hundred years of growth, the quality of the landscape in these areas now needs to be redeveloped and upgraded. This is due to 'cycles of change' experienced by many ports. Some ports (or parts thereof) are, and may have been for some time, in a rundown state due to a variety of factors. These include a drop-off in trade, or expansion away from certain areas which are then left to decay if no new use is found for them.
The initial development of waterfronts started centuries ago with a suitable land/water interface. Such an interface would have been used for a fledgling fishing industry, or for communication between land masses or along coasts. For example the hunter-gatherer societies which lived close to the coast could have used the sea to provide a substantial part of their diet. Also it would have been ideal for communication as the sea was the easiest route by which to travel because the land was often too hard to cross with primitive transport methods, e.g. the Maoris used several points along New Zealand's coastline as entry/exit points to the land. This proved easier than attempting to travel great distances through thick bush.
Such travel occurred in many countries, as in pre-industrial England where the majority of settlements were within 20 miles of a water body on which transportation was possible.
With entry/exit points established for food supply, communication, and movement of goods (trading), ideal sites for establishment of settlements were provided. Many cities today have their origins as small establishments next to water; whether by the coast or on a navigable river.
As the initial settlements grew, the waterfronts (centres for water transport and later for manufacturing) had to expand to cope with the increasing volumes and numbers of uses.
With this increase, the facilities to service the uses also increased e.g. warehouses, sheds, and railway systems. This can eventually lead to the waterfront areas being cut off from the rest of the city by barriers formed by the buildings and land transport systems.
But waterfronts are unique areas within any urban area. They are areas where there is a lot of activity (ship and cargo movement) and thus are magnets to which many city dwellers are attracted, especially since the increase in leisure time available to people recently has allowed them to pursue more activities.
But also, water has a range of expressions, and is constantly changing in response to light conditions, presence of wind, and human activities. Because of this character, water softens and mobilizes the hard, still lines of the manmade environment; it induces a sense of serenity and peace, and a contemplative mood.
People can experience the waterfront atmosphere in two ways: (a) Passively; sitting and watching the ever-changing form of the water, and the activities occurring on the water or (b) Actively; taking part in the waterfront activity through boating or fishing for example.
Realisation has occurred that a conflict has arisen from waterfront development of the past. With increase in the size of cities and increase in the number of potential users 'experiencers', there has also been an increasing barrier formed (the waterfront facilities) that stop the people from getting to the waters edge.
In the light of the development of port waterfront areas, and since people do wish to experience the waters edge, this study will look at the course development has taken and what directions further development may take.
This will be studied in two parts;
PART A - A broad overview of international development
PART B - A New Zealand case study of Auckland's waterfront.
The first chapter will give an historical account of waterfront development, but 'will highlight the developmental processes involved. Following this, the study will discuss the issues arising from development, and the different port situations produced by processes operating. These issues will then be the focus of development opportunities and trends such development exhibits.
The interest and responsibility groups for change in development at various stages will be discussed.
The case study will use Auckland's waterfront as an example. This will look at the history and processes of the port's development to see how it relates to the overall pattern of waterfront development.
The issues arising from the type of waterfront at Auckland will be brought out and finally there will be a discussion of the opportunities existing at this waterfront.||en