Proposed change to Chapter 6 of the Canterbury Regional Policy Statement

Introduction

Environment Canterbury notified Proposed Change 1 to Chapter 6 of the Canterbury Regional Policy Statement (CRPS) on 16 January 2021. Submissions close at 5 pm on Monday 15 February 2021.

Context

Chapter 6 of the CRPS, titled Recovery and Building of Greater Christchurch, was inserted into the CRPS in 2011 as part of the earthquake recovery strategy and consequentially the Chapter is geographically limited only to the Greater Christchurch area, not all of Canterbury. The Chapter is aimed at enabling the recovery of Greater Christchurch’s urban form post-earthquake.

The proposed change is specifically targeted to implement an action in Our Space 2018–2048: Greater Christchurch Settlement Pattern Update Whakahāngai O Te Hōrapa Nohoanga (Our Space 2018-2048) and gives effect to the National Policy Statement on Urban Development 2020.

Our Space 2018–2048 was prepared through a submission and hearing process under the Local Government Act. It identified that housing development capacity in the Selwyn and Waimakariri Districts are potentially not sufficient to meet demand over the medium and long-term. A targeted change to the CRPS was identified as part of the proposed planning response.

Wider and longer-term urban development issues will be considered as part of a scheduled full review of the CRPS in the next four years.

What Proposed Change 1 seeks to do

The proposed change seeks to:

  • designate new future housing development areas in Rolleston, Rangiora and Kaiapoi, by making changes to Map A. This map is a core element of Chapter 6 and plays a key role in defining the pattern of urban development allowed in the Greater Christchurch Area over the next 30 years. The proposed Map A included in Proposed Change 1 is copied below (Figure 2), along with the current version of Map A (Figure 1). New areas for future housing are marked as “Future Development Areas”;
  • associated with the above, introduce a new policy 6.3.12 regarding Future Development Areas that details the circumstances when urban development within these areas can be enabled by the Selwyn and Waimakariri District Councils; and
  • give effect to actions decided through Our Space 2018-2048 and enable the relevant councils to give effect to their new obligations under the National Policy Statement on Urban Development 2020.

 Map A - Old vs New

The streamlined planning process

Ordinarily this change to the CRPS would need to step through the standard Schedule 1 RMA process for changing resource management planning documents. However, the Minister for the Environment has approved the use of a streamlined planning process (streamlined process) for Proposed Change 1, which is different to the standard Schedule 1 process.

One of the differences between the streamlined process and the Schedule 1 process is that the proposed change will not go to a hearing and be decided on by a hearing commissioner.

Instead, the decision on Proposed Change 1 will be made by the Minister for the Environment following receipt of a report, and any recommended changes, prepared by Environment Canterbury.

Conclusion

Proposed Change 1 is a targeted change that implements Our Space 2018-2048 by inserting specific amendments to Map A and a new policy regarding Future Development Areas into the Chapter 6 of the CRPS. It formalises decisions that has already been made under the Our Space 2018-48 consultation process.  

In these circumstances it seems unlikely that submissions seeking substantial amendments to Chapter 6, or to Map A, would be accepted. Such matters are probably best reserved for the scheduled full review of the CRPS in the next four years.

To read more about the proposed change to Chapter 6, visit Environment Canterbury’s webpage here.

If you have any questions about the proposed change to Chapter 6, or would like assistance in preparing a submission, please get in touch with one of the Adderley Head team.

Disclaimer: This is a brief summary for information purposes only and is not legal advice.

Posted on Monday 1st February, 2021 at 12:45 pm