Daylighting waste : can community-based recycling depots become part of Auckland’s everyday life?

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Kettle, Elizabeth Elaine (Betsy)
Author ORCID Profiles (clickable)
Master of Landscape Architecture
Unitec Institute of Technology
Irving, Daniel
Davies, Renee
Bradbury, Matthew
Masters Thesis
Ngā Upoko Tukutuku (Māori subject headings)
community waste minimisation
community recycling centres
Auckland City Council
Resource Recovery Network
Kettle, E.E. (2014) Daylighting waste : can community-based recycling depots become part of Auckland’s everyday life? An unpublished thesis submitted in partial fulfilment of the requirements of the degree of Masters in Landscape Architecture.
This project explores the potential role of landscape architecture in waste minimisation, specifically around the conceptualisation, siting and design of Community Recycling Centres as part of the Auckland Council’s zero waste–orientated Resource Recovery Network. Landscape architects may have new opportunities to affect the culture of waste by understanding the intersections of waste minimisation, resource recovery and community based social marketing. Executive Summary CHAPTER 1 : DAYLIGHTING THE SITUATION This chapter opens by defining key concepts and establishes waste as a global problem, to be explored specifically through the lens of Auckland’s aspirational goal of zero waste. To achieve this goal, Auckland Council promotes the establishment of community recycling centres (CRCs) as part of a region-wide resource recovery network and community waste minimisation plan. However, the role of CRCs in the context of Auckland’s current waste industry and urban development framework is not well understood, and the first section of the chapter provides perspectives from the key stakeholders in resource recovery, including industry, government, non-profit organizations, and outlines some of their key interactions. The first chapter also considers the role of landscape architecture in resource recovery. Literature shows little evidence that landscape architects have been substantially engaged with resource recovery operations. There also is scant literature on methodological approaches or design techniques for resource recovery. Further, literature has not addressed different meanings of community waste minimisation and how it can be accomplished. Thus, to discover how an adaptation of CRCs, an adaptation which this author terms “community-based recycling depots,” might become part of Auckland’s everyday life, the initial literature search is broadened to investigate planning and waste management, with the aim to clarify the problem through the lens of landscape architecture. CHAPTER 2: RESEARCH REVIEW AND INVESTIGATIONS: This chapter explores community recycling centres (CRCs) in the context of community waste minimisation and outlines past attempts at CRC design. This review aims to understand how CRCs might fit within the existing waste network, specifically with the adoption in 2012 of the Auckland Council Waste Management and Minimisation Plan (WMMP). This aim is further supported in the review of two CRC scoping studies (Dickinson, 2012, p. 9; Luxton, 2013), two inorganic collection reports (Auckland Council, 2013a; Waste Not Consulting, 2007), and the formal Auckland Council Waste Assessment (Auckland Council, 2012). Last, to understand the physical layout of CRCs, a study of the underlying variables affecting the design of existing facilities is undertaken both overseas and in NZ. The review then considers the role of landscape architecture in waste minimisation. A study of community-based waste initiatives and methodologies that aim to affect behavioural change is undertaken, with site visits and a desk study to compliment and corroborate evidence uncovered in the literature on the layout and design of CRC sites. CHAPTER 3: THE COMMUNITY-BASED RECYCLING DEPOT CONCEPT: As noted, the proposed new model for resource recovery is a Community-Based Recycling Depot (CBRD), which is the focus of the third chapter. The model consists of six major components: an industrial area, a recycling drop-off, an image area, and a buffer area with “flows” and “social edges” integrated throughout the site. This model is formulated for a real-world site and includes criteria from which to evaluate a successful CBRD design. CHAPTER FOUR: COMMUNITY-BASED RECYCLING DEPOT: DESIGN AND TESTING: To evaluate the initial proposal, the model is tested following a traditional landscape architectural design process at an example site. This process involves a continuous critique of the on-going, site-based design propositions, and outlines how the model is attuned at the site level. This process also reviews the relationships that determine the successful location of possible sites for the new CBRD. CHAPTER 5: COMMUNITY-BASED RECYCLING DEPOT: REFLECTIONS AND CONCLUSIONS The on-going design process is frozen at a point that answers the basic design parameters and satisfies the purposes of the study. These are reflected upon as a means of moving forward in the future, with a clearer set of questions for a real-world project. It is found that landscape architects have opportunities to affect the design of resource recovery facilities through mitigation of environmental impacts, design for amenity value in an increasingly dense city form, and design of social edges for cultural change. When all three of these directives are integrated through design synergies are created that reduce the land area needed and provide for a more flexible, urban form capable of affecting waste-wise behaviour. Landscape architects therefore have a unique contribution to make in the design of community-based recycling depots part of our everyday urban landscape.
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