District Plan Review: National Planning Standards Reformat Project

The National Planning Standards (NPStd) contain a number of mandatory requirements for Council to implement. We will be implementing changes to our District Plan to align with the requirements in the NPS over the next few years.

Phase 1: Reformat & Restructure of the District Plan (2023)

The NPStd requires District Plans to follow a standardised format - this is known as a 'mandatory' direction. This essentially means that our District Plan has to be updated to look and function in the same way as all other district plans in the country.

What this practically means is a reformat and restructure of our District Plan. While it will look different, the substance of the document (e.g. objectives, policies and rules) will remain the same. The content is just been moved to other parts of the document to align with the NPStd.

The main changes included in Phase 1 are:

  • new chapter structure,
  • a new numbering format
  • an electronic version available online and
  • republished Planning Maps

We'll be releasing the new structure on this website in November 2023.

Section 58I of the Resource Management Act allows Council to make these changes without consultation, provided no substantive changes are made.

Phase 2: Plan Change I: Omnibus Amendments (2024)

Phase 2 of the process to implement the NPStd requires a formal public plan change. This includes where the NPStd contains discretionary directions, or where we need to make substantive changes as a consequence of Phase 1.

Council staff are reviewing the scope of this project, but is likely to include:

  • Plan Change I(a): Minor Amendments (that still require public consultation)
    • e.g. removal of Anticipated Results Anticipated section
  • Plan Change I(b): Substantive Changes
    • e.g. making changes to District Plan Objectives, Policies or Rules

Making these changes requires a formal plan change public process as set out in Schedule 1 of the Resource Management Act.

Work is underway in developing Plan Change I and we will provide updates on this page when we are starting draft engagement.

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