There are competing demands for a range of land use activities in our Rural Environment. A permissive planning framework has led, in some areas, to incompatible land uses and significant adverse effects on rural character, amenity and indigenous biodiversity.
In some cases, productive land and highly versatile soils have been used in a way that compromises the future viability of primary production activities, such as horticulture and agriculture, and inappropriately uses existing infrastructure and services.
The current Rural Production Zone applies a single set of provisions to the majority of the District, which does not address the specific issues faced by our different rural areas and communities.
It is also important that our District Plan reflects that our rural settlements differ in their ability to access the infrastructure and services available in urban centres.
Key issues are addressed by:
- A new Horticulture Zone, which protects our high-quality soils for food production
- A new Rural Settlement Zone, which recognises that our rural communities have different needs than our urban areas
- Stronger Rural Production Zone provisions to better manage our rural land and reduce urban sprawl.
- Supported protecting productive land
- Sought a wider range of activities in the Rural Production Zone
- Supported larger lots proposed, but suggested inclusion of a Rural Lifestyle Zone
- Supported the proposed Horticulture Zone and suggested its extension to other areas.