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3.3 Gisborne

3.3 Gisborne

3.2.1 Gisborne Combined Regional Land and District Plan

Gisborne District Council was provided with a copy of the questionnaire and summary assessments of the Gisborne Combined Regional Land and District Plan, but chose not to comment.

3.3.1.1 Context

The Gisborne district lies in the north eastern corner of the north island and is the largest district in the North Island comprising a total area of 8,355km2. The population of the Gisborne district is 44,463 (2006 census). The population of the district increased 1.1% between 2001 and 2006. Ninety-five per cent of the district’s population reside in Gisborne township.  The Council is implementing a number of township development plans which provide for community aspirations and needs over the next 10-20 years.  These include goals and actions such as upgrading the town centre of Patutahi by 2011.  In addition, in March 2009 the Council released a draft Urban Development Strategy.  It identified that its natural environment and lifestyle are key values that make Gisborne unique and attractive. It has an isolated small coastal city feel, Maori heritage, cultural diversity, an attractive climate with easy access to nature and outdoor recreation, has a laid-back, slower pace and friendly people, and is easy to get around with closeness of facilities with easy access to rural life.  It proposes to address urban development/design issues by advocating for seven key directions:

  1. Compact City
  2. Quality Environment, Places and Spaces
  3. Strong Neighbourhoods
  4. Vibrant Culture and Identification with Heritage
  5. Articulation of the Maori Cultural Landscape
  6. Support for Economic Development
  7. Implement Best Practice and Integrated Planning.

The Gisborne District Council has a projected income under its 2008/2009 Annual Plan of $72,442 million, 57% of that income coming from rates and 43% of that income coming from other sources.

3.3.1.2 Plan Provisions

Land use in the Gisborne District is managed by a zoning and overlay technique.  Both regional and district provisions are included in the Combined Regional Land and District Plan (CLRDP) and take the form of objectives, policies, methods and rules. Where necessary, district and regional functions have been separated within the CLRDP. There are no plan changes that introduce urban design provisions which are relevant to this study.

The Gisborne District Council was sent the questionnaire and summary of the Gisborne Combined Regional Land and District Plan for assessment. The Council declined to provide feedback.

Amenity
The Plan includes a large number of district wide and zone specific amenity provisions. These provisions include controlling the effects of development with regard to lighting and glare, noise, daylight and privacy and maintaining an acoustic environment compatible with the character of the area.

Commerce
The Plan provides for mixed uses, especially in the business zones, by allowing a wide range of activities so long as they meet the activity standards for that zone.

The Plan includes a number of design controls to enhance shopping, walking and cycling experience in town and neighbourhood centres. These provisions, such as verandas and landscaping, are only applicable to the business zone.

Home occupations are provided for as a permitted activity in residential zones.

Choice
There are few provisions within the Plan that relate to choice. Whilst there is an objective within the Plan to enable a diversity of residential styles within the district, there are no rules which give effect to this.

There are rules within the Plan that provide for a variety of section sizes, maximum permitted building heights and site coverage which can affect housing density and design.

There are no provisions within the Plan that allow for increased densities in association with the provision of open space, maximum parking standards, accessible public spaces and the provision of higher density development and subdivision around town centres and public transport nodes.

Custodianship
There are a large number of district wide provisions that aim to incorporate noise mitigation measures to reduce noise impacts from major infrastructure. These provisions include noise from port management zones, airport noise and arterial roads. There are no provisions within the Plan to reduce noise impacts from town centres.

There are no provisions within the Plan that aim to incorporate renewable energy sources in subdivision and development and water saving devices or crime prevention through environmental design principles.

The Plan includes a large number of provisions to avoid or mitigate the effects of natural and manmade hazards. Rules within the Plan include the provision of a hazard overlay, site design guidelines, records and a contingency plan.

There are no provisions within the Plan which consider the on-going maintenance and care of buildings, spaces, place and networks, the use of design to improve the environmental performance of infrastructure and provisions which consider the impact of design on people’s health.

Collaboration
The only provision within the Plan regarding collaboration is a method to encourage public/private partnerships for city centre development projects.

Character
The Plan includes a high number of provisions relating to character. There are a number of district wide and zone specific provisions aimed at retaining a ‘sense of place’. These provisions include maintaining the sense of place and identity of the city centre, ensuring development is designed with regard to the character of the area, and encouraging the reuse of buildings. There are no provisions within the Plan that aim to promote a ‘sense of place’.

There are a number of district wide provisions for the protection and enhancement of urban water bodies, distinctive landforms and indigenous vegetation. There are also a number of methods identified within the Plan that aim to help achieve this.

Heritage
There are a high number of heritage provisions under the Plan. The Plan states that items registered by the Historic Places Trust and items identified by Gisborne District Council, tangata whenua and the community form the basis for the heritage register. The Plan includes a number of non-regulatory provisions for the protection of heritage values as well a large number of provisions which aim to respond to heritage values.

Open Space
There are few provisions within the Plan that address the open space sub-categories. The policies in the Plan include providing for the creation of esplanade strips and to work with landowners to design and purchase additional reserve space. The Plan includes a number of methods such as economic instruments, an open space strategy and recreation plans.

Connectivity
The Plan includes a high number of provisions relating to the connectivity sub-criteria. The District has a walking and cycling strategy, and an active recreation strategy.  However, the Plan does not include provisions to promote walking and cycling or environments that encourage people to become more physically active. There is one objective within the Plan that promotes the visual and physical link between activities and the surrounding environments.

Urban Growth
There are no relevant provisions within the Plan.

3.3.1.3 Summary

The Gisborne Combined Regional Land and District Plan has a relatively low number of urban design provisions. Under the Plan, 51% of the questionnaire sub-criteria are addressed through the Plan provisions. The following graph illustrates and compares the proportion of those sub-criteria for which the numbers of relevant provisions were high, medium or low, or for which there were no relevant provisions, under the Plan.

Extent of relevant provisions in operative RPS

Extent of relevant provisions in operative combined plan
The graph shows the extent to which the sub-criteria have been incorporated in Gisborne District Council’s Combined Regional Land and District Plan.  Fifty one percent of the relevant provisions address the sub-criteria.  These are addressed as follows: 33% at a low weighting, 10% at a high weighting, and 8% at a medium weighting.  Forty nine percent of the relevant provisions do not address the sub-criteria.

The above graph shows that almost half of the sub-criteria under the questionnaire are not addressed under the Gisborne CRLDP.

The urban design outcomes that are well provided for within the Plan are amenity, commerce, character and heritage.

Most assessment criteria under, choice, custodianship, open space and connectivity are addressed through the Plan. Collaboration and urban growth management are not covered well under the Plan. Gaps include:

  • allowing increased densities in association with the provision of open space
  • no maximum parking standards
  • ensuring public spaces are accessible to everyone
  • the provision of higher density development around town centres and public transport nodes
  • no renewable energy, water saving, or low impact or integrated stormwater design rules or guidelines
  • mitigation measures to mitigate noise impacts from town centres
  • Crime prevention through environmental design provisions
  • no provisions addressing ongoing maintenance requirements for buildings and spaces
  • no provisions involving the community in decision making, or using private/public partnership
  • no provisions to consider the impact of design on people’s health
  • no provisions to involve communities in meaningful decision making
  • no provisions which promote a ‘sense of place’
  • no non-regulatory incentives to protect or maintain heritage items
  • having clear boundaries between public and private open spaces
  • no provisions which promote walking and cycling
  • no green networks that link public and private open space
  • no urban growth management.