We’re preparing to amend the Tauranga City Plan, to help address our shortage of homes and help our city grow up as well as out.
Tauranga is growing, and like all major cities we’re in the thick of a housing crisis. We’re short of homes, and there is limited bare land available that’s suitable for development. There’s also very little choice in the type and size of homes available in existing residential areas, with the three/four-bedroom standalone house still the standard throughout Tauranga.
To help address our housing crisis, Tauranga needs to grow up as well as out. And we’ve been given strict direction by central government to enable this, fast.
Central government direction
Late last year the Government passed a piece of legislation to help grow New Zealand cities: the Resource Management (Enabling Housing Supply and Other Matters) Amendment Act 2021. It directs the councils of high-growth cities, including Tauranga, to amend their city plans so that they:
- allow people to build up to three dwellings of up to three storeys (a height of 11 metres) on most sections in residential zones, without needing to obtain a resource consent
- enable higher density housing with more building height around the city centre and town centres across the city, and close to public transport.
We are required by the Amendment Act to change the Tauranga City Plan to enable this, through a plan change which must be notified to the community for feedback by 20 August this year.
Influencing the plan change
There is limited scope as to what we – both Council and the community – can influence, as the Amendment Act dictates what many of the rules need to look like, especially for buildings of three storeys or less.
What we can influence is what developments of four storeys or more will look like, and where these higher density areas are located. You will have the opportunity to have your say on this through the formal submission process.
Work in progress
We’re working under a very short timeframe for this plan change, which is also technically complex. We don’t have all the answers yet as to what it will contain, so we will be sharing information as we go. Here is what we know for now.
Enabling medium density housing in all residential zones
The Amendment Act defined a set of Medium Density Residential Standards, that we must apply to our residential zones, allowing people to build up to three dwellings of up to three storeys without a resource consent. Take a look at the proposed rules for medium density.
Drafting rules for medium density housing
Enabling higher density housing around centres
The Amendment Act also requires our city plan to enable higher density housing with more building height around the city centre and town centres across the city, and close to public transport. Find out how we’re planning to decide where higher density housing should be made easier.
Drafting rules for higher density housing
Where the higher densities may not apply
There are some areas of the city that may be identified as unsuitable for higher densities. This needs to be justified through the plan change process.
Identifying where the rules may not apply