Otago Daily Times
Planning changes illreceived
CHRISTCHURCH: Rules that would increase building heights and scrap minimum carparking requirements in parts of Christchurch have been called ‘‘horrifically tonedeaf’’ and an ‘‘Auckland plan written by Wellington bureaucrats’’.
It comes as the Christchurch City Council works on an implementation plan for the national policy statement (NPS) on urban development, released in July, which aimed to increase housing development in urban areas.
Five ‘‘tierone’’ cities, which included Christchurch, would be directed to free up rules around planning decisions.
Dunedin is listed as a tiertwo city.
The Christchurch council was directed to make changes to its district plan, which included scrapping — without public consultation — all minimum car parking requirements by February 2022 and increasing building heights and densities in certain parts of the city by August 2022.
The council’s urban development and transport committee — which was made up of all city councillors and the mayor — was briefed yesterday on this work and discussed the affects the NPS could have on Christchurch.
Many councillors told the meeting the NPS seemed directed at fixing problems in Auckland, and would instead cause problems in Christchurch, especially around the availability of car parking in the city — an issue that frequently came up around the council table.
Cr James Gough called it ‘‘nothing more than an Auckland policy’’.
‘‘Some of our biggest planning issues in the city [are] parking — or the lack of it.’’
He said the ‘‘horrifically tonedeaf’’ NPS was like ‘‘cramming a round peg into a square hole’’.
Cr Sam MacDonald said it looked like an ‘‘Auckland plan written by Wellington bureaucrats’’. — The New Zealand Herald