District-wide matter: Earthworks


District Plan Review consultation now closed.

Initial public consultation on key draft changes to the current Selwyn District Plan closed on Monday 8 October 2018. Thank you to everyone who let us know what they thought of the review so far.

What’s next?

Following this initial public consultation on the District Plan Review, the Council will consider all feedback and start developing detailed provisions for the Proposed District Plan. Please note that a summary report on the initial public consultation will be made available on Your Say Selwyn website at www.selwyn.govt.nz/districtplanreview.

It’s expected the Proposed District Plan will be

District Plan Review consultation now closed.

Initial public consultation on key draft changes to the current Selwyn District Plan closed on Monday 8 October 2018. Thank you to everyone who let us know what they thought of the review so far.

What’s next?

Following this initial public consultation on the District Plan Review, the Council will consider all feedback and start developing detailed provisions for the Proposed District Plan. Please note that a summary report on the initial public consultation will be made available on Your Say Selwyn website at www.selwyn.govt.nz/districtplanreview.

It’s expected the Proposed District Plan will be notified in early 2020 for formal public consultation. The longer timeframe is due to the local government elections at the end of 2019 and ensuring the newly elected Council endorses the Proposed District Plan before it gets notified.



We want to know what you think about the draft changes to earthworks related rules and policies in the current District Plan. These draft changes have been endorsed by the Selwyn District Council for further development as part of its District Plan Review.

How can I have a say?

To give us your feedback on the draft changes , you can:

There will be many consultation opportunities for feedback at different stages of the District Plan Review and this is the first such opportunity. It’s expected that the new District Plan will be notified in early 2020 and be fully in place, subject to any Environment Court appeals, in March 2022.

Background

Earthworks in the current District Plan

All earthworks and stockpiles are permitted in the district, provided a series of conditions can be met which avoid, remedy or mitigate any adverse effects as a result of earthworks. The conditions or performance standards are, for example, capping the maximum amount of material per project as a result of earthworks (which can vary between different zones across the district) and how land needs to be remediated after the earthworks are finished. If these standards cannot be met, earthworks becomes a
discretionary activity, which means resource consent is required.

Currently the permitted threshold for earthworks is capped at a volume of 5,000m3 per project in the Rural Zone and 2,000m3 per project in non-rural zones.

A series of activities are excluded from the earthworks rules, including the digging of post holes, burying pets, maintaining flood protection works and digging for building foundations.

Considering that subdivision activities and utility-related works remain subject to the earthworks provisions, it means that residential subdivisions typically also need a separate land use consent to deal specifically with earthworks.


  • Key draft changes for the future District Plan

    10 months ago
    The Council’s District Plan Committee has endorsed the following draft changes for further development, which we’re now consulting on:
    • Update existing performance standards such as:
    1. instead of per project-based standards, consider limits based on a site area or frequency of activity.
    2. review the earthworks volume thresholds for all zones and replace them with a revised set of thresholds which could relate to one or more of volume, area, depth, frequency or slope face gradient.
    3. lower the current upper limit in residential and commercial areas, to reflect the potential adverse effects that earthworks could have on the surrounding environment.
    4. change ...
    The Council’s District Plan Committee has endorsed the following draft changes for further development, which we’re now consulting on:
    • Update existing performance standards such as:
    1. instead of per project-based standards, consider limits based on a site area or frequency of activity.
    2. review the earthworks volume thresholds for all zones and replace them with a revised set of thresholds which could relate to one or more of volume, area, depth, frequency or slope face gradient.
    3. lower the current upper limit in residential and commercial areas, to reflect the potential adverse effects that earthworks could have on the surrounding environment.
    4. change rules for remediating land to acknowledge that for some types of earthworks, such as storage ponds and earth bunds, land cannot be remediated with current remediation options.
    5. introduce limits on stockpile heights in the Rural Zone from sensitive activities for earthworks, to protect the surrounding environment, in particular nearby property boundaries, from being visually impacted.
    • Earthworks activities that don’t meet the permitted standards would be assessed as restricted discretionary activities (rather than current discretionary) and would be subject to discretionary matters relating to adverse dust, visual and land stability effects, as well as the effects on cultural values and the adoption of accidental discovery protocols.
    • Replace rules relating to earthworks and contaminated land with a cross-reference to the NESCS.
    • Preparation of land for subdivision would no longer require a separate resource consent.
    • Introduce rules that directly refer to the mauri and life-supporting capacity of soils in the district which can be adversely affected by earthworks.

  • Summary of key issues with the current District Plan

    10 months ago
    As a result of the review of current policies and rules specific to earthworks, we’ve identified the following issues with the current District Plan:
    • the volume-related thresholds for earthworks activities, including the control of such activities on a ‘per project’ basis;
    • gaps in the rules relating to the stockpiling of material, and the remediation of land that has been subject to earthworks;
    • the absence of a reference to the potential cultural effects of soil disturbance from general earthworks activities;
    • the absence of a reference to the National Environmental Standard for Assessing and Managing Contaminants in Soil to Protect Human Health...
    As a result of the review of current policies and rules specific to earthworks, we’ve identified the following issues with the current District Plan:
    • the volume-related thresholds for earthworks activities, including the control of such activities on a ‘per project’ basis;
    • gaps in the rules relating to the stockpiling of material, and the remediation of land that has been subject to earthworks;
    • the absence of a reference to the potential cultural effects of soil disturbance from general earthworks activities;
    • the absence of a reference to the National Environmental Standard for Assessing and Managing Contaminants in Soil to Protect Human Health (NESCS) for the control of earthworks activities on contaminated land; and
    • the need to control earthworks associated with subdivision activities through separate permitted activity standards.