The Auckland Council has agreed to consider splitting some of the higher-density housing zones in its 30-year blueprint, the Unitary Plan.
In the first public debate since consultation on an early version of the development plan, a majority of councillors on Tuesday approved exploring the splitting of two zones into parts with differing height limits.
Some want to wait until they have access to all 23,000 public submissions.
A clearly irritated mayor Len Brown chastised some councillors who he believed were deliberately trying stop the council finishing the draft version by October.
"If we can get there by solid agreement and concentration and working things through, then why not? We can do stuff in this council, we always agreed there would be pace and momentum around what we were trying to do."
Auckland councillors will spend the next month behind closed doors assessing public feedback on the Unitary Plan and changes that could be made to a draft version.
Some communities objected to plans to intensify housing in their areas, such as allowing town houses up to three storeys high.
Deputy mayor Penny Hulse says lowering heights in part of the large mixed housing zone won't affect the city being able to accommodate growth in the long term.