Resource Management Amendment Bill Submission

2021-11-19

Unintended Consequences of the new Resource Management Amendment Bill regarding intensification of houses. This is part of our submission on the Government's new Bill.

Whilst we are generally supportive of the intentions. As always with rushed legislation there are unintended consequences.

The proposed rules have been established to enable greater infill housing and intensification of existing neighbourhoods and new residential zones, such as when rural land is urbanised. However, master planning a new (large) residential neighbourhood already enables and involves a wide range of considerations including providing for a variety of housing types which can be offered at a range of different price points to meet the different needs of different people and which reflect physical characteristics (such as topography) and planning characteristics (such as locating higher density housing adjoining open space areas).

This results in achieving good urban design outcomes to ensure density is appropriately located in the right place in the right quantum whilst balancing across an entire site. The RMA rezoning process ensures that those outcomes are achieved through the relevant objective/ policy/ rule regime already.

Templeton is concerned that the application of these new rules to areas that have been through site-specific planning processes to provide the medium density residential housing outcomes overall may undermine the high quality outcomes that those developments have been carefully planned to deliver. Some areas have been the subject of many years of careful planning and development.
Changing the planning framework in such a blunt way will compromise, if not undermine, the high quality, medium density developments anticipated in these areas.

Areas which have been planned in this manner provide medium density residential housing on an overall basis across a large area, with overall density achieved through varying density across individual sites which both under and over-deliver the required density. Site-specific planning in this manner allows for the outcome of medium density residential housing while providing for varied landscapes and amenity, and also catering for features that mean a lesser density may be appropriate.