Draft OARC Regeneration Plan - 3: Enabling activities

The Otakaro Avon River at Bexley

Changes to the Christchurch District Plan and the Canterbury Land and Water Regional Plan are considered necessary to give effect to the Regeneration Plan’s Vision and Objectives. Appendix 1, the Proposed Amendments to the Resource Management Act Documents sets these changes out in full.

When the Regeneration Plan has been approved by the Minister, Christchurch City Council and the Canterbury Regional Council will be directed under section 61(1) of the Greater Christchurch Regeneration Act 2016 (GCR Act) to amend the district and regional plans.

Once the Regeneration Plan is notified in the New Zealand Gazette, the Regeneration Plan will become a statutory document under the GCR Act. Until the GCR Act expires on 30 June 2021, any decisions on resource consents, or changes to planning documents must not be inconsistent with the Regeneration Plan. This requirement also applies to other documents under the Local Government Act 2002, the Conservation Act 1987, Reserves Act 1977 and the Wildlife Act 1953. This includes Long-Term Plans and Annual Plans prepared by local authorities.

Both the Land Use Recovery Plan 2013 and Christchurch Central Recovery Plan 2012 apply to parts of the Regeneration Area. Given the potential for overlap, Regenerate Christchurch developed proposals to partially revoke these two Plans insofar as they relate to the Regeneration Area. The partial revocation will ensure that only one Plan applies to the area – that is the Regeneration Plan.

Christchurch District Plan 2017

The Christchurch District Plan is a document prepared under the Resource Management Act 1991 as modified by the provisions of the Canterbury Earthquake (Christchurch Replacement District Plan) Order 2014. It sets a framework for the use and development of resources in the district in a manner that meets the goal of sustainable management. It includes objectives, policies and rules to manage the environmental effects of land use activities. Key changes proposed to the District Plan include the following.

The Specific Purpose (Ōtākaro Avon River Corridor) Zone

The amendments include the creation of a new Specific Purpose (Ōtākaro Avon River Corridor) Zone with its own objective and policy framework and rule package. This new zone is intended to respond to the unique identity of the Regeneration Area by reflecting the Regeneration Plan’s Vision and Objectives.

The zone provisions generally enable the preferred land uses while also addressing the potential effects of these land uses on the environment. This includes a range of permitted activities, as well as a consent pathway for those activities that may have effects requiring specific management. In addition, a consenting pathway is provided to enable evaluation and decision-making in respect of those land uses that are not currently identified as preferred but may arise in the future. Consistent with feedback from the community (which supported restoration of the natural environment) the planning provisions include an overall Regeneration Objective. This establishes priority outcomes for the Regeneration Area and will assist decision-makers in enabling the overall Vision and Objectives, including the outcomes anticipated by the Spatial Plan, to be met.

While the amendments proposed to the District Plan provide a framework for land use development within the Regeneration Area, it is anticipated that the landowner will have a significant role in determining land use activities that may have the potential to establish. Part of this role will be to develop an Implementation Plan that will include a Design Guideline that sits outside of, but complementary to, the District Plan provisions. See Phase 1: Create the Platform for further detail.


Development Plan

The amendments include a Development Plan that reflects the land uses proposed within the Regeneration Plan. The proposed District Plan provisions align with the character and activities anticipated by the Regeneration Plan for each area – for example, the Green Spine and each of the Reaches.


Transitional uses

The amendments allow for some additional activities on a short-term basis provided they are consistent with the anticipated character of the areas and do not foreclose anticipated appropriate permanent uses.


Existing activities

The amendments provide for the continued use of remaining privately owned sites for residential and additional specified activities as though they were zoned Residential Suburban, Residential Suburban Density Transition or Residential Medium Density. The provisions also manage the effects of new activities within the Regeneration Area on these privately owned sites, for example through setback and landscape requirements.


Infrastructure

Stormwater management areas, stopbanks and transport corridors are considered to be critical to the achievement of the Vision and are enabled in the planning provisions. Infrastructure will be required to be designed to take into account ecological restoration, naturalisation and other important natural features within the Regeneration Area.

Other activities are managed so that they do not undermine the provision and functioning of this infrastructure.


Residential activities

The amendments provide for limited new residential activities within the Regeneration Area, where they are in specific areas identified for this type of development (trial housing and edge housing areas) or are for caretaker or site management purposes.


Natural hazards

The provisions provide a consent pathway for structures in High Flood Hazard Management Areas where they have been purposefully designed to be hazard resilient and meet a set of specific criteria.


Landings

The landings are areas where small-scale buildings and structures are expected to be clustered in a node, and where the location is intended to be close to and interact where possible with the river. As a result, the amendments include changes to district-wide rules that would otherwise apply to activities near the river.

Canterbury Land and Water Regional Plan 2017

The purpose of the Canterbury Land and Water Regional Plan (LWRP) is to identify the resource management objectives for managing land and water resources in Canterbury to achieve the purpose of the Resource Management Act 1991.

Activities anticipated in the Ōtākaro Avon River Corridor are expected to trigger regional resource consent requirements under the LWRP, including works in waterways, vegetation clearance and disturbance of the river bed (from works and dredging).

Global resource consent applications can be made for some of the above-mentioned activities and there are also existing global consents that it may be possible to rely on. Global consents allow an applicant to carry out the same type of work on a number of different sites and avoid the need for separate resource consents for each site, reducing the time and cost involved in obtaining the necessary approvals.

To further guide and support regeneration in the Regeneration Area, some amendments to the LWRP have been identified. An objective is proposed in the Christchurch-West Melton sub-regional Chapter to recognise and enable the benefits of the regenerated corridor. This will be supported by a policy that enables regeneration, provided adverse effects on the environment are mitigated.

A further policy and corresponding rule are proposed to ensure a focused and expedited decision-making process for the Regeneration Area by requiring specified resource consents under the LWRP to be processed and considered without public notification.

It is proposed that the ability for public notification be retained in relation to non-complying activities only, which are activities that are not encouraged or anticipated by the Plan and are more likely to generate effects that could warrant public involvement in the resource consent process.

It is also proposed that the ability for limited notification be retained to enable persons identified as being adversely affected the opportunity to lodge a submission and participate in the resource consent process.

Changes to the Christchurch District Plan and the Canterbury Land and Water Regional Plan are considered necessary to give effect to the Regeneration Plan’s Vision and Objectives. Appendix 1, the Proposed Amendments to the Resource Management Act Documents sets these changes out in full.

When the Regeneration Plan has been approved by the Minister, Christchurch City Council and the Canterbury Regional Council will be directed under section 61(1) of the Greater Christchurch Regeneration Act 2016 (GCR Act) to amend the district and regional plans.

Once the Regeneration Plan is notified in the New Zealand Gazette, the Regeneration Plan will become a statutory document under the GCR Act. Until the GCR Act expires on 30 June 2021, any decisions on resource consents, or changes to planning documents must not be inconsistent with the Regeneration Plan. This requirement also applies to other documents under the Local Government Act 2002, the Conservation Act 1987, Reserves Act 1977 and the Wildlife Act 1953. This includes Long-Term Plans and Annual Plans prepared by local authorities.

Both the Land Use Recovery Plan 2013 and Christchurch Central Recovery Plan 2012 apply to parts of the Regeneration Area. Given the potential for overlap, Regenerate Christchurch developed proposals to partially revoke these two Plans insofar as they relate to the Regeneration Area. The partial revocation will ensure that only one Plan applies to the area – that is the Regeneration Plan.

Christchurch District Plan 2017

The Christchurch District Plan is a document prepared under the Resource Management Act 1991 as modified by the provisions of the Canterbury Earthquake (Christchurch Replacement District Plan) Order 2014. It sets a framework for the use and development of resources in the district in a manner that meets the goal of sustainable management. It includes objectives, policies and rules to manage the environmental effects of land use activities. Key changes proposed to the District Plan include the following.

The Specific Purpose (Ōtākaro Avon River Corridor) Zone

The amendments include the creation of a new Specific Purpose (Ōtākaro Avon River Corridor) Zone with its own objective and policy framework and rule package. This new zone is intended to respond to the unique identity of the Regeneration Area by reflecting the Regeneration Plan’s Vision and Objectives.

The zone provisions generally enable the preferred land uses while also addressing the potential effects of these land uses on the environment. This includes a range of permitted activities, as well as a consent pathway for those activities that may have effects requiring specific management. In addition, a consenting pathway is provided to enable evaluation and decision-making in respect of those land uses that are not currently identified as preferred but may arise in the future. Consistent with feedback from the community (which supported restoration of the natural environment) the planning provisions include an overall Regeneration Objective. This establishes priority outcomes for the Regeneration Area and will assist decision-makers in enabling the overall Vision and Objectives, including the outcomes anticipated by the Spatial Plan, to be met.

While the amendments proposed to the District Plan provide a framework for land use development within the Regeneration Area, it is anticipated that the landowner will have a significant role in determining land use activities that may have the potential to establish. Part of this role will be to develop an Implementation Plan that will include a Design Guideline that sits outside of, but complementary to, the District Plan provisions. See Phase 1: Create the Platform for further detail.


Development Plan

The amendments include a Development Plan that reflects the land uses proposed within the Regeneration Plan. The proposed District Plan provisions align with the character and activities anticipated by the Regeneration Plan for each area – for example, the Green Spine and each of the Reaches.


Transitional uses

The amendments allow for some additional activities on a short-term basis provided they are consistent with the anticipated character of the areas and do not foreclose anticipated appropriate permanent uses.


Existing activities

The amendments provide for the continued use of remaining privately owned sites for residential and additional specified activities as though they were zoned Residential Suburban, Residential Suburban Density Transition or Residential Medium Density. The provisions also manage the effects of new activities within the Regeneration Area on these privately owned sites, for example through setback and landscape requirements.


Infrastructure

Stormwater management areas, stopbanks and transport corridors are considered to be critical to the achievement of the Vision and are enabled in the planning provisions. Infrastructure will be required to be designed to take into account ecological restoration, naturalisation and other important natural features within the Regeneration Area.

Other activities are managed so that they do not undermine the provision and functioning of this infrastructure.


Residential activities

The amendments provide for limited new residential activities within the Regeneration Area, where they are in specific areas identified for this type of development (trial housing and edge housing areas) or are for caretaker or site management purposes.


Natural hazards

The provisions provide a consent pathway for structures in High Flood Hazard Management Areas where they have been purposefully designed to be hazard resilient and meet a set of specific criteria.


Landings

The landings are areas where small-scale buildings and structures are expected to be clustered in a node, and where the location is intended to be close to and interact where possible with the river. As a result, the amendments include changes to district-wide rules that would otherwise apply to activities near the river.

Canterbury Land and Water Regional Plan 2017

The purpose of the Canterbury Land and Water Regional Plan (LWRP) is to identify the resource management objectives for managing land and water resources in Canterbury to achieve the purpose of the Resource Management Act 1991.

Activities anticipated in the Ōtākaro Avon River Corridor are expected to trigger regional resource consent requirements under the LWRP, including works in waterways, vegetation clearance and disturbance of the river bed (from works and dredging).

Global resource consent applications can be made for some of the above-mentioned activities and there are also existing global consents that it may be possible to rely on. Global consents allow an applicant to carry out the same type of work on a number of different sites and avoid the need for separate resource consents for each site, reducing the time and cost involved in obtaining the necessary approvals.

To further guide and support regeneration in the Regeneration Area, some amendments to the LWRP have been identified. An objective is proposed in the Christchurch-West Melton sub-regional Chapter to recognise and enable the benefits of the regenerated corridor. This will be supported by a policy that enables regeneration, provided adverse effects on the environment are mitigated.

A further policy and corresponding rule are proposed to ensure a focused and expedited decision-making process for the Regeneration Area by requiring specified resource consents under the LWRP to be processed and considered without public notification.

It is proposed that the ability for public notification be retained in relation to non-complying activities only, which are activities that are not encouraged or anticipated by the Plan and are more likely to generate effects that could warrant public involvement in the resource consent process.

It is also proposed that the ability for limited notification be retained to enable persons identified as being adversely affected the opportunity to lodge a submission and participate in the resource consent process.