2                                        15 December 2020

HUTT CITY COUNCIL

 

District Plan Review Subcommittee

 

Minutes of a meeting held in the Council Chambers, 2nd Floor, 30 Laings Road,
Lower Hutt on

 Tuesday 15 December 2020 commencing at 4.00pm

 

 

 PRESENT:                      

Deputy Mayor T Lewis

Cr K Brown

Cr B Dyer

Cr S Edwards (Chair)

Cr N Shaw

Ms M Dentice

 

APOLOGIES:                  Mr A Ede

 

IN ATTENDANCE:       Ms H Oram, Director Environment and Sustainability

Mr H Wesney, Divisional Manager District Plan Policy

Mr N Geard, Senior Environmental Policy Analyst

Mr J Joseph, Senior Environmental Policy Analyst

Ms C McNab, Environmental Policy Analyst

Mr S Davis, Policy Planner

Mr B Haddrell, Policy Planner

Ms K Stannard, Head of Democratic Services (part meeting)

Ms H Clegg, Minute Taker

 

PUBLIC BUSINESS

 

1.       APOLOGIES 

Resolved:  (Cr Edwards/Cr Shaw)                           Minute No. DPRS 20601

That the apology received from Mr Ede be accepted and leave of absence be granted.”

2.       PUBLIC COMMENT

There was no public comment.

3.       CONFLICT OF INTEREST DECLARATIONS  

             There were no conflict of interest declarations.

4.       Minutes

 

Resolved:   (Cr Edwards/Deputy Mayor Lewis)               Minute No. DPRS 20602

“That the minutes of the meeting of the Extraordinary District Plan Review Subcommittee Meeting held on Wednesday, 11 November 2020, be confirmed as a true and correct record subject to an amendment to Item 4 to read: Cr Dyer highlighted he had discussions about purchasing a block of land near Wise Street, Wainuiomata.  He noted it was not in the area being discussed and to date had not proceeded.”

5.

SEAVIEW MARINA DISTRICT PLAN CHANGE (20/1129)

Report No. DPRS2020/6/321 by the Head of District Plan Policy

 

 

Mr Alan McLellan, Chief Executive of Seaview Marina Limited was in attendance for the item.

The Divisional Manager District Plan Policy elaborated on the report. 

Mr McLellan outlined the future aspirations of the Seaview Marina. He explained that the current limitations placed on development at the marina were not fit for purpose for a modern marina and were more onerous than restrictions placed on marinas in other parts of the country. 

Cr Dyer left the meeting at 4.09pm.

Mr McLellan suggested a minimum building height limit of 15m for the marina and an increase of the current 1000m2 maximum floor area to at least 2000m2 to enable developments to proceed. 

Cr Dyer rejoined the meeting at 4.10pm.

Mr McLellan further explained that the marina was now home to residents living on 60 boats and asked that a range of service businesses be permitted.  He believed that many non-marine related businesses would be attracted to the marina which would benefit all businesses and visitors in the area.   He outlined plans for a gateway building to be constructed in association with the Lowry Bay Yacht Club to house retail and shared office facilities.

In response to a question from a member regarding the process, the Divisional Manager District Plan Policy advised if the plan change for Seaview Marina was progressed and became operative, the full District Plan review could still require changes to it as a result of more detailed investigations.  He added that as the review was assessing the wider picture it was likely that new information would come to light.

In response to questions from a member, the Divisional Manager District Plan Policy confirmed either continuing with the plan change or placing it on hold and progressing with the full District Plan review would result in a similar outcome, approximately four years down the track.  He acknowledged a plan change might provide short term relief for the marina however that was dependent on the submissions received and the outcomes of any appeals.  He added that the plan change could be viewed as an interim step to what would be covered by the full review process.  He advised that the hazardous substance aspects of the area were not yet fully understood and that a resource consent process was potentially cheaper than a plan change process.

In response to a question from a member, Mr McLellan acknowledged the Seaview Marina Board would be content with making a resource consent application for immediate plans, with the knowledge that a full review would reassess the marina and activities permitted within it.

In response to a question from a member regarding the likelihood of approval for a resource consent for a large building at the marina site, the Divisional Manager District Plan Policy advised the objective for the current marina zone was to ensure development was compatible with the surrounding environment.  He advised any proposed development would need to be fully assessed against the objective.

Cr Dyer express  support for the recommendation.  He expressed concern that it may not result in the optimal result for the Seaview Marina Board.

The Chair commented that the Seaview Marina Board had delivered a prime asset for the city.  He believed, on balance, that a full review of all elements to the area, including hazardous substances and natural hazards would be advantageous.

 

 

RESOLVED: (Cr Edwards/Deputy Mayor Lewis)        Minute No. DPRS 20603

“That the Subcommittee directs officers to proceed with Option 1 contained within the report that the short and long term aspirations of the Seaview Marina are addressed through the full District Plan review.”

For the reason that it is efficient use of Council and community resources and time. Short-term development aspirations at the marina can be met progressively via a resource consent process.

 

  

6.

Natural Hazards - Earthquake and Land Instability (20/1537)

Report No. DPRS2020/6/322 by the Senior Environmental Policy Analyst

 

The Senior Environmental Policy Analyst elaborated on the report.

In response to questions from a member, the Senior Environmental Policy Analyst confirmed the current knowledge gap regarding liquifaction particularly on a site specific scale.  He advised liquifaction was a matter for discretion in Discretionary Activity applications.  With regard to the budget for the review, he advised initial assumptions were made regarding possible technical reports required.  He further advised a liquifaction study was not identified as a priority, given the upcoming Building Code amendments, and that the risks associated with earthquakes, land instability and tsunamis were considered priorities. 

In response to a question from a member regarding the risk from the Wellington faultline, the Senior Environmental Policy Analyst explained that the areas most at risk of a rupture of that faultline had been identified. 

In response to questions from a member, the Senior Environmental Policy Analyst explained that the current tsunami report was commissioned from an evacuation point of view.  He explained that building heights were currently determined by factors other than possible liquifaction risk.  He confirmed a regional group of planners regularly met to discuss approaches to various matters, including liquifaction information.  He added that no other local authorites in the region had commissioned liquifaction reports.

In response to a question from a member regarding land stability versus liquifaction, the Senior Environmental Policy Analyst confirmed it was an easier task to determine areas of land instability, as liquifaction risks required site by site analyses.

In response to a question from a member regarding the process, the Divisional Manager District Plan Policy advised initial public consultation would commence in February 2021.  He said this would continue throughout the first half of the new year for each topic, with a series of issues being published for feedback, followed by reports back to members with additional technical information as it was received.  Direction would be sought from members to allow for options to be formed, more public consultation would be undertaken and reports back to members resulting in the formulation of draft District Plan provisions and the formal advertising of the Draft District Plan.  He added this was when the legally required public consultation timeframes would come into effect. 

The Director Environment and Sustainabilty added that the Heritage Chapter review was aligned with the city wide heritage consultation exercise.

In response to a question from a member, the Senior Environmental Policy Analyst confirmed that the results of any new studies could not be retrospectively applied to existing situations and that Existing Use Rights would apply. 

 

Resolved:    (Cr Edwards/Cr Brown)                                 Minute No. DPRS 20604

“That the Subcommittee:

(i)    notes and receives the information contained in the report;

(ii)   directs officers to undertake the District Plan Review through the following approach (Option 2 in the Options section of this report):

A full review of the District Plan approach on earthquake and land instability natural hazards, with additional technical assessments; and

(iii)  directs officers to commission technical assessments on slope stability and tsunami hazard risk.”

 

7.

Natural Hazards - Flooding (20/1227)

Report No. DPRS2020/6/323 by the Environmental Policy Analyst

 

Mr Ben Fountain from Wellington Water Ltd (WWL) and Mr Andy Brown, Flood Protection Team Leader from Greater Wellington Regional Council (GWRC) were in attendance for the item. 

The Environmental Policy Analyst elaborated on then report.

Mr Brown explained that GWRC was hoping to work with communities and other partners (eg WWL) to create management plans for residential areas at risk of a 1:100 year flood, and a 1: 20 year flood in rural areas.  He advised such management plans could include implementation management practices.  He further advised the current Hutt River/Te Awa Kairangi remodelling project was expected to be completed in early 2021, with the Wainuiomata River project due for completion towards the end of 2021.

Mr Fountain explained that the District Plan was a vital tool in managing flood risk, suggesting that higher minimum floor level requirements and protection of overland flow paths to allow water to flow naturally would greatly assist with flood risk management.  

In response to questions from a member, the Environmental Policy Analyst confirmed the current flood information was the most up to date available and that as new information came to light it would be incorporated into reports to the subcommittee.  She also confirmed there was collaboration between all parties.  She advised the first level of public consultation would be designed to make the public aware of flood risks, and to determine acceptance levels eg permitting an uninhabitable building in a flood risk area, such as a garage, may be more acceptable than permitting a dwelling.

In response to a question from a member regarding availability of flood mapping, the Director Environment and Sustainability explained that for developments requiring a building or resource consent, even in areas without flood maps available, sign-off from WWL was required and that if their requirement was for a certain minimum floor height, then that was the standard officers would require.

Cr Shaw left the meeting at 5.23pm.

In response to a question from a member, Mr Fountain explained that Hydraulic Neutrality was designed to ensure developments did not exacerbate any flooding issues.  He added that WWL was trying to implement this requirement across the region. 

Cr Shaw rejoined the meeting at 5.25pm.

 

Resolved:    (Cr Edwards/Cr Shaw)                                   Minute No. DPRS 20605

“That the Subcommittee:

(i)         agrees to undertake a review of the natural hazards (flood hazards and related stormwater) in line with the details set out in Option 3 within the report;

(ii)        agrees to work with Wellington Water Limited and Greater Wellington Regional Council to source information on flood risk across the district;

(iii)       agrees to investigate the feasibility of undertaking a strategic flood risk assessment for the whole district for the next 100 years taking into account all forms of flooding and climate change; and

(iv)       agrees to the engagement approach for the review of natural hazards (flood hazards and related severe weather) as summarised in section 7 within the report.”

For the reasons of efficient use of Council resources; reflects the issues facing the district and city with respect to flood hazards; will utilise the most up to date information on flood risk available; will provide for measures to assist with avoiding, remedying and mitigating the natural hazard risks facing the district; supports the Council’s aims of developing a resilient community and development of adaptation strategies; gives effect to the RMA, RPS and National Planning Standards; achievable timeframes; aligning the District Plan with national and global best practice; and ensuring an appropriate level of engagement and consultation. 

 

8.

Rural Zones (20/1125)

Report No. DPRS2020/6/324 by the Environmental Policy Analyst

 

Cr Dyer left the meeting at 5.27pm.

The Environmental Policy Analyst elaborated on the report. 

Cr Dyer rejoined the meeting at 5.29pm.

In response to questions from members, the Environmental Policy Analyst advised the current Urban/Rural boundary was not reflective of current demands.

Deputy Mayor Lewis expressed concern with urban pressures on rural areas and the possible adverse environmental effects.

Cr Brown anticipated public consultation on this topic would be passionate and requested a fully comprehensive process.  The Environmental Policy Analyst acknowledged these comments and added that officers had recently commenced dialogue with Wainuiomata Rural representatives and would consult on a range of subtopics.

Cr Dyer commented that rual ratepayers should be relatively easy to identify and contact as they all paid rural rates.  He asked officers to be pro-active. 

The Chair noted that privacy laws potentially hampered contacting ratepayers through their rates notice information for anything other than rates related items, unless prior permission had been given by the ratepayer.

Cr Brown left the meeting at 5.37pm.

 

Resolved:     (Cr Edwards/Cr Dyer)                                Minute No. DPRS 20606

“That the Subcommittee:

(i)    agrees to undertake a review of the Rural Activity Areas Chapter and zoning in line with the details set out in Option 2 within the report; and

(ii)   agrees to the engagement approach for the review of the Rural Activity Areas Chapter as outlined in section 7 within the report.”

For the reasons of efficient use of Council resources; reflects the nature, qualities and pressures on rural areas; current rural activity areas match fairly closely to the new rural zones in the National Planning Standards; consideration of national or regional policy to be implemented specifically for or affecting rural areas; and ensure engagement and consultation that aims to work with the rural community to develop an effective District Plan. 

 

9.

Commercial and Mixed Use Zones (20/1220)

Report No. DPRS2020/6/325 by the Senior Environmental Policy Analyst

 

Cr Brown rejoined the meeting and Cr Dyer left the meeting at 5.39pm. 

The Senior Environmental Policy Analyst elaborated on the report.

Cr Dyer rejoined the meeting and Cr Brown left the meeting at 5.40pm. 

In response to questions from members, the Senior Environmental Policy Analyst confirmed future commercial and mixed use zones would reflect the National Policy Statement (NPS) requirements.

Deputy Mayor Lewis expressed concern with interface areas between zones.

Cr Brown rejoined the meeting at 5.42pm.

Cr Shaw noted that Plan Change 43 had introduce mixed zones in eight key areas around train stations, as well as in Stokes Valley, Avalon and Wainuiomata.

The Senior Environmental Policy Analyst advised an option to deal with mixed use zones may be to have a spatial layer relating to height or to add a variation within a zone.  He noted that the initial basis for introducing the mixed zones of Plan Change 43 had been “walkable distances” and that this premise was also used in the NPS.

The Director Environment and Sustainability reminded members that details had not yet been finalised and that officers were looking to hear from the community first.

Cr Edwards considered Melling Station was now regarded as a rapid transit station, and that Stokes Valley could be suited to a suburban mixed use zone.  He queried how the mixed use zones would relate to the natural hazard areas, if such areas were excluded from NPS-Urban Development requirements.  The Divisional Manager District Plan Policy advised all chapters would be inter-related in the final product and that in the process zones might need to be altered or changed.

Deputy Mayor Lewis asked  for assurance that already held information would be utilised. The Divisional Manager District Plan Policy confirmed this was  the case.

 

 

Resolved:    (Cr Edwards/Deputy Mayor Lewis)              Minute No. DPRS 20607

“That the Subcommittee:

(i)    receives the information in the report; and

(ii)   directs officers to undertake the commercial and mixed use topic of the District Plan Review through the following approach:

(a)   carry out engagement with key stakeholders;

(b)   review all existing provisions of the commercial zones;

(c)   review the extent of all commercial zoning and determine if there are any areas that could be rezoned to an alternative zoning, or if any new areas of commercial or mixed use zoning are required;

(d)   develop high level options for the commercial zones that give effect to the national planning standards, the National Policy Statement – Urban Development, and that address the key issues identified in this report; and 

(e)   develop district plan provisions for the commercial zones that give effect to the selected high level option.”

 

10.

Industrial Zones (20/1442)

Report No. DPRS2020/6/326 by the Senior Environmental Policy Analyst

 

The Senior Environmental Policy Analyst elaborated on the report. 

In response to a question from a member regarding the extent to which Council was required to be cognisant of activities outside of its boundaries, the Senior Environmental Policy Analyst advised all local authorities were required to undertake an assessment of all business lands.   

The Director Environment and Sustainability added that the Seaview industrial area contained hazardous substances and activities which were not conducive to residential activities. 

Deputy Mayor Lewis requested that the intent of Plan Change 29 with regard to residential activities be noted, as the plan change had enabled some residential activity, however that had not eventuated.

 

Resolved:     (Cr Edwards/Cr Dyer)                                   Minute No. DPRS 20608

“That the Subcommittee:

(i)    receives the information in the report; and

(ii)   directs officers to undertake the industrial zone topic of the District Plan Review through the following approach:

(a)     carry out engagement with key stakeholders;

(b)     review all existing provisions of the industrial zones;

(c)      review the extent of all industrial zoning to determine if there are any areas that could be rezoned to residential or commercial uses;

(d)     develop high level options for the industrial zones effect to the national planning standards, the National Policy Statement – Urban Development, and that address the key issues identified in this report; and

(e)      develop district plan provisions for the industrial zones that gives effect to the selected high level option.”

 

11.

Hazardous Substances (20/1549)

Report No. DPRS2020/6/327 by the Divisional Manager District Plan Policy

 

The Divisional Manager, District Plan Policy elaborated on the report.  

In response to a question from a member, the Divisional Manager, District Plan Policy confirmed that there were hazardous substances present in all industrial areas of the city.

In response to a question from a member regarding paragraph 40 of the report, the  Divisional Manager, District Plan Policy advised this work was not specifically required in relation to hazardous substances.

 

Resolved:   (Cr Edwards/Cr Dyer)                                     Minute No. DPRS 20609

“That the Subcommittee agrees to undertake a review of the Hazardous Substances Chapter in line with the details set out in Option 2 contained within the report.”

For the reasons of efficient use of Council resources; reflects the nature, qualities and pressures on hazardous substances;  current approach for hazardous substances is generally effective, though requires refinement to align with the National Planning Standards and hazardous substances legislation and regulations; and ensure engagement and consultation that relates to those parties with specific interest or relevant to hazardous substances.

12.     QUESTIONS   

          There were no questions.

 

 

 

            Cr S Edwards

CHAIR

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

CONFIRMED as a true and correct record

Dated this 18th day of February 2021