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Monday, 25 June 2012

Land zoning review process - Part 2

Minister Brownlee's announcement last week of a zoning review process has been criticised for not being particularly clear about who the process is for and what is involved. Roger Sutton's weekly Chief Executive Update published today set out to clarify the situation (here).

Unfortunately both releases appear to have been written by the same team of waffley thinkers so here is a more succinct way of describing the process:
  1. If you live on the flat part of greater Christchurch you will be in either a Red Zone or a Green Zone.
  2. If you live on the hills, you are or were white, and this process does not apply to you. Your turn comes next month with a separate process when all the white areas have been classified to a different colour.
  3. If you are Red you can appeal to be rezoned Green.
  4. If you are Green you can appeal to be rezoned Red.
  5. If you are Green you cannot appeal the technical category of your land: i.e. Green/Blue, Green/Yellow, or Green/Gray.
  6. When you appeal it can only be in terms of the criteria set out by Cabinet, most especially it must have an area-wide focus rather than just your piece of land.
Note that the criteria set out in Roger Sutton's Update is incomplete. The criteria in the Cabinet Minute involves the thickness of the surface crust, lateral spread, and the timeliness, uncertainty, disruption arising from repairs to infrastructure and property, health and welfare. In addition boundary lines are to be drawn on a sensible basis. If the boundary between Red and Green is a road, that makes sense; if the boundary is a neighbour's fence then it indicates the possibility of arbitrary decision making.

For CERA's information on the process see Minister Brownlee's announcement here and Roger Sutton's update here. There is also a previous blog post covering the Cabinet criteria and where to find it here.

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