District-wide matter: Outstanding natural landscapes and features

We want to know what you think about the draft changes to outstanding landscape areas and associated rules and policies in the current District Plan, which the Council has recently endorsed for further development as part of its District Plan Review.

How can I have a say?

There are many ways for you to give us your feedback on the draft changes to landscapes that merit protection. You can:

There will be more consultation opportunities for feedback at different stages

We want to know what you think about the draft changes to outstanding landscape areas and associated rules and policies in the current District Plan, which the Council has recently endorsed for further development as part of its District Plan Review.

How can I have a say?

There are many ways for you to give us your feedback on the draft changes to landscapes that merit protection. You can:

There will be more 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

About Outstanding Natural Landscapes and Features

Selwyn is an area rich with natural features and landscapes including the Canterbury Plains and Southern Alps to the mighty Rakaia and Waimakariri rivers and the important coastal lagoon of Te Waihora/Lake Ellesmere. Living in such a beautiful environment contributes to our wellbeing, quality of life and identity. It’s important that our outstanding natural environment is protected from inappropriate land use and development, while at the same time ensuring it continues contributing to people’s economic and social wellbeing.

Review of landscapes in the current Selwyn District Plan

As part of the District Plan Review the Council has also been reviewing all rural areas and features in our district which are of landscape significance, and their associated rules and policies. This follows the Resource Management Act’s direction that all councils must recognise and provide for the protection of outstanding natural features and landscapes from inappropriate subdivision, use, and development.

We’ve therefore been looking at whether the district’s outstanding landscape areas are properly identified and protected, and whether the rules for anyone wanting to develop or use the land in these areas are clear and up to date with any relevant changes that have happened since the last District Plan was notified.

Current status

in the current District Plan, areas and features with landscape value that merit protection are referred to as Outstanding Natural Features (ONF), Outstanding Natural Landscapes (ONL), Visual Amenity Landscapes (VAL) and Forestry Exclusion Areas. All are different in their location and extent.

The following landscape areas are currently identified in the District Plan:

  • Four ONL areas within the Port Hills, Inner Plains, Malvern Hills, and High Country;
  • One VAL area on the Port Hills (overlapping with part of the ONL area);
  • One ONF area encompassing Te Waihora/Lake Ellesmere ; and
  • A number of Forestry Exclusion areas within the Malvern Hills.








  • Summary of draft changes to landscapes in the current District Plan

    4 months ago
    Lake coleridge

    The Council’s District Plan Committee has recently endorsed the following draft changes for addressing identified issues for further development, which we’re now consulting on with affected landowners and stakeholders:

    • Broadly, the draft landscape areas are similar in location, however a larger area of the district is now identified.
    • Only two landscape classifications are now identified (ONL and VAL).
    • The High Country is where the majority of the increases in mapped ONL and VAL areas are located.
    • Refinement of the extent of the draft ONL and VAL areas in the Port Hills to...

    The Council’s District Plan Committee has recently endorsed the following draft changes for addressing identified issues for further development, which we’re now consulting on with affected landowners and stakeholders:

    • Broadly, the draft landscape areas are similar in location, however a larger area of the district is now identified.
    • Only two landscape classifications are now identified (ONL and VAL).
    • The High Country is where the majority of the increases in mapped ONL and VAL areas are located.
    • Refinement of the extent of the draft ONL and VAL areas in the Port Hills to remove overlap and confusion.
    • Much of the broader draft ONL area includes Department of Conservation land (as it did originally).
    • The margins of Te Waihora/Lake Ellesmere are now included as an ONL area as they are integral to the broader waterbody of the lake.
    • The entire Rakaia and Waimakariri rivers are now identified (up to the top of the terrace in lower sections). This matches adjacent districts (where they have been reviewed).
    • Resource consents may be required for a wider range of activities to better protect landscape areas from adverse effects. For example, resource consents required for buildings on the margins of Te Waihora/Lake Ellesmere, Rakaia River and Waimakariri River ONLs, and intensification of pastoral farming in High Country may also be subject to resource consent.

  • Summary of key issues with existing landscape provisions in the current District Plan

    4 months ago
    Photo 2

    As a result of the review of current policies and rules specific to landscapes, we’ve identified the following issues:

    • Existing protected areas and features have been identified on an ad hoc basis and not as part of a comprehensive review of the entire district.
    • Current landscape areas aren’t considered to be adequately protected from the adverse effects from a number of activities, including quarrying, earthworks, mining, and pastoral farming in the High Country.
    • Current provisions in the District Plan don’t follow best practice or are not fully aligned with regional requirements.
    • There...

    As a result of the review of current policies and rules specific to landscapes, we’ve identified the following issues:

    • Existing protected areas and features have been identified on an ad hoc basis and not as part of a comprehensive review of the entire district.
    • Current landscape areas aren’t considered to be adequately protected from the adverse effects from a number of activities, including quarrying, earthworks, mining, and pastoral farming in the High Country.
    • Current provisions in the District Plan don’t follow best practice or are not fully aligned with regional requirements.
    • There is an overlap in between the different landscape areas in the Port Hills, which is confusing and difficult to appropriately manage.