Ratepayers have accused the Auckland Council of being undemocratic after they claim they weren't notified of a controversial new unitary plan.
About 20,000 residents were caught off guard by plans for more apartment buildings in their suburbs, following a rezone proposal.
"For democracy to work it's got to be simple and transparent and this is certainly neither of those," St Heliers/Glendowie Residents Association chairman John Robertson said.
"This is a process which completely ignores people's rights to comment and participate in town planning designs which have been enshrined in legislation for over 40 years."
The council said it was asked for a more intensified plan by the independent panel presiding over the complex mapping out of Auckland's future growth.
"We're really clear that this plan is for the whole of Auckland for the next 30 years we don't want to shut out a whole generation of people from owning homes in Auckland," Auckland Deputy Mayor Penny Hulse said.
Suburbs where ratepayers have agreed to a mix of single and multi-level dwellings in their suburb were broadsided by a second proposal representing changes to allow multi-level development in more than 80 per cent of the suburb.
The Auckland Council will hold its first full meeting of the year tomorrow.
The Independent Hearing Panel is due to report back to the Akl Council in July. There will be a two month consultation period before the finalised Unitary Plan is signed off in October.