6 October, 2011
Exemption will deliver over 1000 more sections
The Government has moved to open up more land for residential development in Kaiapoi following the announcements in June and August that around 1000 properties in the Waimakariri District had been zoned red because of severe earthquake damage.
Canterbury Earthquake Recovery Minister Gerry Brownlee is using his powers under the Canterbury Earthquake Recovery Act to address the impact of noise contours around Christchurch International Airport that could prevent new residential development in parts of Kaiapoi.
"The existing noise contours would have negatively impacted residents in the residential red zone who need to move off their land but who want to stay in the area," Mr Brownlee said.
"By changing the current Regional Policy Statement up to another 300 residential sections could be opened up for development in south-west Kaiapoi and as many as three times that number in the north-east.
"This is good news for people looking at options to stay or live in the local community.
"Overall it's a positive outcome because it provides for the safe and efficient operation of the airport with a 50 decibels air noise contour, but provides an exemption within that zone for residential development in Kaiapoi."
Mr Brownlee said the change to the Regional Policy Statement takes effect from Saturday (8 October 2011) when the public notice will be published.
"A number of parties have been involved in discussions on this issue, including Christchurch International Airport, Environment Canterbury and the Waimakariri District Council, and I want to thank them for their constructive contributions.
"It isn't always easy when there are conflicting demands, but I know everyone appreciates the need to get good outcomes for residents who have been so badly affected by the earthquakes.
"We've made this one-off exemption to the noise contour because of the extenuating circumstances in Kaiapoi, which suffered severe damage in the earthquakes. It's unlikely any further exemption under the Canterbury Earthquake Recovery Act will be on the cards.
"Today's announcement is part of the wider work underway to address housing supply matters in Kaiapoi and across the greater Christchurch area and further announcements are expected over the next few weeks," Mr Brownlee said.