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Council approves District Plan change to allow greater building coverage

Taupō district councillors last week gave final approval to change the Taupō District Plan to allow for increased building coverage on most residential properties and reduce the amount of red tape for homeowners to deal with.

Plan Change 39 – Residential Building Coverage increases building coverage in most of the district’s residential environments from 30 percent to 35 percent.

Building coverage sets the maximum amount of land that residential buildings can cover on a residential property. So, at 35 percent, if your property is 600m², buildings could cover 210m² of your land. Under the old rules you would be allowed 180m².

Taupō District Council general manager strategy and environment Warrick Zander says the building coverage increase is in response to the way people are choosing to live, such as larger families looking to live together. Until now, landowners who wanted to exceed the building coverage had to apply for a resource consent, a process which often created unnecessary extra costs and time.

“In recent years we’ve seen more and more people wanting to build or extend their home to cover a bit more of their section but they’ve had to go through council to do that,” Mr Zander says. “In simple terms, the plan change means most people can now have a building that covers up to 35 percent of their section, without having to go through the resource consent process.”

The plan change was recommended to be approved by an independent hearing panel and this decision was notified by the council at the end of November. This was followed by a 30-day appeal period, which closed on 7 February with no appeals received.

The plan change officially becomes operative on Friday 8 March but consents that have been lodged recently will be processed under the new rule.

The change to residential building coverage was part of a bundle of six District Plan changes undertaken as part of the sectional review of the District Plan. The remaining five plan change decisions are expected to be received in the first half of this year.


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