Waikato District Council has sought an extension to the notification date for new Medium Density Residential Standards (MDRS) which will allow for the development of up to three homes of up to 11 metres in height in some residential areas.
In a statement, the Council said it had sought the extension from the Minister of Environment to better allow it to carefully consider the specific requirements of its communities.
“There are four towns within the district which meet the legislative criteria for the application of the MDRS – Ngāruawāhia, Huntly, Tuakau and Pokeno. However, it may not be appropriate for the MDRS to be applied to the entirety of the towns without some modification,” Council said in a statement.
“This could be because of matters such as there being significant heritage or character value, or because of specific hazards, such as flooding,” it said.
Waikato District Council’s Chief Executive, Gavin Ion says it’s paramount the MDRS apply only to areas where it is appropriate to do so and where there are not any elevated or unmanageable risks.
“The Waikato district encompasses a wide variety of topographic and demographic considerations including agricultural and coastland, heritage sites, riverside properties, historic sites and more,” he said.
“We need to ensure we do not apply a cookie cutter approach in a way which could disadvantage residents in our district. Ensuring that we have a framework that is fit for purpose is critical for us as a Council, and especially to be able to continue to deliver on our promise to create communities that are Liveable, Thriving and Connected.”
The current notification date is 19 September 2022. A 30-day public submission period will still be provided regardless of any change to the notification date, Council said.