Fuseworks Media

WCC decision to remove heritage listings has national impact

A group of homeowners fighting against unilateral council heritage designation says there will be a “welcome” domino effect throughout New Zealand from the Wellington City Council’s decision to remove heritage listings because they were opposed by owners.

Yesterday, ten heritage listings were removed by WCC as part of its residential zoning overhaul. All heritage listings had been opposed by the building owners, who wanted it removed.

WCC Councillor Ben McNulty said, “We have ten owners here saying please don’t list our buildings. Because it’s a problem, it’s not a solution”.

VHG Spokesperson Phil Barry says the decision has major implications for the fight by property owners around the country against compulsory council heritage designations.

“The WCC decision acknowledges the unfairness of listing properties that cause serious problems for the owner and the wider community.

“In many cases, like the heritage designations just removed by the Council, building owners are blocked from upgrading properties to meet rental standards or undertaking other modernisations that lead to better housing and infrastructure for the community.

“This decision will start the ball rolling around the country, for Councils to allow property owners to designate their properties as heritage, or to do something else with it – especially where there is no strong interest in heritage expressed by the community.”

Phil Barry says the Government should enshrine in the Resource Management Act the right for homeowners to approve or refuse heritage designation.

“Homeowners suffer when councils impose heritage labels. They have no choice and no compensation for the many costs, lost opportunities, and changes to their lives.


Powered by Fuseworks and Truescope - Media monitoring, insights and news distribution for New Zealand organisations.