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Mackenzie District Council begins review of District Plan

Council has kicked off a review of the Mackenzie District Plan.

A District Plan is essentially the rule book that sets district-wide rules for sustainably managing how people use, subdivide, and develop land, what and where they can build, and what kind of activities they can undertake.

The Plan also controls any adverse effects an activity could have on the neighbourhood and protects the uniqueness of our district by looking after our heritage, cultural values, outstanding landscapes, and coastal environment among other matters.

The Mackenzie District Plan is currently 15 years old and needs to be reviewed and updated to better respond to the effects of growth, bring it into line with national and regional planning instruments, and implement the newly created Mackenzie Spatial Plans.

The District Plan Review will work in stages which, once complete, will achieve a fully replaced District Plan in the National Planning Standard format. The stages the plan will work through are outlined here.

Mackenzie District Mayor, Graham Smith, is excited to see the review process underway. “There’s no getting around the fact that our Plan is well out of date, and we’re taking an approach that we believe is both achievable and affordable. We’re really looking forward to cracking into the work and sharing it with the community to see what they think.”

Partnering with the community and mana whenua, the District Plan will look to raise the bar for the future of the Mackenzie District. It will ensure MDC can manage the effects of growth whilst planning for the future. It will also ensure the environmental, social and economic needs of each community are provided for.

The effects of growth and development are being felt across the Mackenzie District, both positively and negatively. The current planning framework is outdated and has not kept up the pace with the region’s growth. This is leading to outcomes that were not anticipated when the current operative District Plan was drafted, which are now affecting the communities of the Mackenzie.

Ensuring the community can engage in the process is critical, says Planning Manager, Aaron Hakkaart. “We really want the community to get involved as we carry out the work to ensure the Plan best reflects what they want. This is the community’s plan, we’re simply the vehicle for getting it updated. We’ve set up an online hub and will be updating this as we work through the process and are seeking feedback on the plan stages.”

Stage one of the Review which is focussed on the Strategic Chapters of the District Plan is already underway and the public can find out more information, as well as how to contribute feedback here.

More information on the District Plan Review and how the community can get involved in further stages will be made available as the project progresses.

Further information on the District Plan Review is available here.