Unitary Plan - Residential Zoning

By Penny Anson

Auckland Council has released its current position on residential zoning under the Proposed Auckland Unitary Plan (PAUP). 

Zoning Changes

There has been a slight shift in the location and size of residential zones as notified in the September 2013 version of the PAUP. The Council’s current position on the proportion of land allocated to the five residential zones is shown in Table 1.

Table 1: Percentage of Residential Zoned Land

The most notable difference is the 5.98% increase in the MHU zone (which allows for three storey development). This is almost matched by a 5.5% decrease in the Single House zone.

The Council’s press release states that 75% of Auckland's residential zoned land would continue to be of one to two storeys (under the MHS, Single House and Large Lot, Single House zones).

Out of Scope Changes

The zoning changes have been based on all submissions (and further submissions) received during the PAUP 2013 notification period. Council has also taken into account best practice guidance on rezoning issued by the Unitary Plan Independent Hearing Panel.

The changes include ‘out of scope’ changes – these are changes to a site or area where no submission was received. These changes intend to remove zoning inconsistences and achieve better planning outcomes. 

Hearing Panel Position

The Hearing Panel will consider the Council’s current rezoning position in hearings set down for March and April.

The Chairman of the Panel has released a Direction on the Council’s position which can be downloaded here

This addresses concerns raised by certain groups re the impact on private property rights from ‘out of scope’ changes and the possibility of late submissions.

In short, the Direction states there are no waivers for late submissions and that the Panel must take into account natural justice principles when considering rezoning proposals (whether it be within or out of scope). 

The Panel will make its recommendations on the rezoning issue (and all other PAUP issues) to the Council later this year.

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