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Big Changes Proposed For Residential And Rural Development

Upper Hutt City Council will begin city-wide engagement this week to seek feedback from residents on proposed changes to its District Plan - Plan Change 50.

Over the last two and a half years, Council has been working through a review of the residential and rural chapters of its District Plan to see how it might unlock housing across the city to accommodate the projected growth.

That, along with Government’s National Policy Statement on Urban Development which directs Council to enable greater housing supply, means it is proposing big changes, including reducing the proportion of suburban residential zone by 50%, creating High and Medium Density zones, enabling the construction of a second dwelling on most residentially zoned sites, creating provisions to enable Papakāinga and communal housing options, and establishing settlement zoning throughout the Maymorn area.

Director Planning and Regulatory Services, Richard Harbord, says “Before we go through a formal consultation process with our community in 2022, we want to share our draft proposals for rural and residential areas for feedback, to improve the quality of our final proposal.”

Council is expecting the proposed zoning changes to be of significant interest to residents, with the medium and high density zones to be introduced across the city. An interactive map is available and people can enter their address to see how their property could be impacted.

“One important thing to remember when our community is looking at the proposed zoning changes is that this is a multi-generational plan. The intensification won’t happen overnight, we expect it could take between 30 and 50 years until we see this kind of development at scale” says Richard Harbord.

“We’re also seeking feedback on proposed changes to things like how we plan to protect character areas from overdevelopment, how we can make subdividing more flexible, how we can offer great housing choice and diversity, and how we can develop sustainably” he says.

The feedback period opens on 23 July and runs for six weeks. Formal consultation is expected to take place in 2022. Go to letskorero.upperhuttcity.com to find out more.

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