Following some recent development there are concerns that the earthworks rules within the city plan are not working well. Council is reviewing the earthworks rules to understand whether some rules need to be changed and made clearer.
Through discussions with the development community and the Rangapū, three issues have been identified that can occur during development and potentially result in negative effects:
- Sediment control
There are rules within the city plan to ensure sediment can’t be washed into waterways. These existing rules are creating challenges around the enforcement of managing sediment on building sites.
- Earthworks post subdivision
Generally when land is subdivided, plans will show the earthworks required for that house to be built. However, there are instances where earthworks are carried out after the subdivision is complete and they are not able to be controlled, which has caused site stability issues.
- Earthworks associated with other activities
When earthworks are connected to another activity which is provided for in a zone, it can be reasonably expected that these earthworks are able to be undertaken without the need for a separate consent process. The existing rule needs clarification to ensure earthworks are undertaken at the same time as the establishment of the activity. If that activity requires resource consent, then the earthworks need to be detailed in the application.
During the preparation of the plan change, council continued to work with the development community (inclusive of Mana/Tangata Whenua) to provide education and advice. The amendments proposed as part of the plan change will clarify the intention of the Tauranga City Plan earthworks rules and enables earthworks to be undertaken in a safe manner.
We will continue to progress the amendments to existing earthworks rules through this plan change. Details of the proposed plan change will be presented to the Urban Form and Transport Development Committee on 13 October 2020.