Industrially zoned land in Dunedin is due for some changes. Pictured is the harbourside industrial area. Photo by Stephen Jaquiery.
Industrially zoned land around Dunedin - and specifically in
the central business district - could be in for some radical
Industrially zoned land has been an ongoing issue for
decades, and following recent site-specific changes to some
former industrial zones, there is rising concern industrial
development opportunities could be lost.
In the months ahead, the Dunedin City Council will host a
series of consultative workshops to identify issues, ranging
from land availability, height restrictions, the
controversial ''reverse sensitivity'' element and the
potential for introduction of a new ''light industry''
Both the DCC and the Otago Chamber of Commerce are aligning
on the issue, and are inviting large land-holders, including
Port Otago's subsidiary Chalmers Properties, to take part in
consultation, alongside communities, businesses and
The trio, largely the chamber and DCC, were pitted against
each other during a separate harbourside rezoning plan which
prompted lengthy mediation and eventual compromise. The DCC's
district plan is 18 years old and the review process is being
mooted as a ''second-generation'' district plan, which could
have far-reaching implications for decades.
DCC city development manager Dr Anna Johnson said the council
wanted stakeholder input on the management of industrial
activities, as well as other activities within the industrial
''Some of the issues are general and may be of interest to a
range of people, while others are location-specific so may
only be of interest to those with property or businesses in
these areas,'' Dr Johnson said.
The planning department's ''Industrial Land Needs Study''
final report, of March 2011, identifies in a medium-growth
scenario for Dunedin, food and wood product manufacturing,
along with support services, would most likely occupy larger
allotments. Wood was likely to prefer a rural area.
There was a likelihood petroleum, coal, metal, equipment
manufacturing and non-metal products would require less than
1ha allotments near the CBD, while building construction and
services - with ''modest'' growth projections - would prefer
less than 0.5ha around the CBD and may be expected to locate
to Mosgiel or suburbs adjacent to State Highway 1.
''Overall, the conclusions indicate a need for more
industrial land, especially around the central city and
harbour basin,'' the report said.
Employment data reflects some of the changing uses which
Between 2000 and 2009, a total of 1090 people employees were
lost in manufacturing; textile, clothing and footwear lost
530; machinery and equipment manufacturing were down 540; and
printing lost 270. Total district earnings from manufacturing
were down from 15% to 12% of the total.
Food manufacturers now account for 2050, or 39% of the 5150
people in the manufacturing sector, while 1580 metal workers
make up 23% of the manufacturing sector.
Chamber of Commerce chief executive John Christie said it was
the amount of industrially zoned land around Dunedin was
shrinking, but noted land for bulk retail in Andersons Bay
had been (site-specific) rezoned from industrial.
While there was 216ha of industrially zoned land identified
in the 2009 report, he emphasised Middlemarch and Waikouaiti
would likely suit few newcomers to Dunedin, and while Mosgiel
had a 88ha swathe of land, it too could be unattractive for
smaller businesses whose customer base may be around
''There's just once chance to get this right, which is why we
want developers, communities and land-owners involved from an
early stage,'' Mr Christie said.
Between an earlier report in 2006 to the latest in 2009, the
airport zone had been increased by 270ha, of which 64.5ha is
vacant, while construction of the Forsyth Barr Stadium
reduced industrial 1 zone land by 5.8ha.
The DCC's industrial land use 2009 report notes
of all the land area zoned industrial, 16% is unusable
because of roading and rail networks.
Dr Johnson said issues to be canvassed included whether there
was sufficient land available for industrial activities, and
if not, where it should be provided.
''Another is whether light industry should be distinguished
from heavy industry and be able to operate in `mixed use'
zones, for example in parts of the CBD or in the warehouse
precinct,'' she said.
Rezoning issues around the CBD were aired in a controversial
harbourside plan in recent years, which began almost a decade
earlier and ended up in mediation, and a determination by the
A DCC ''vision'' for a 50-year harbourside regeneration plan,
on land mainly owned by Chalmers Properties, to attract
cafes, bars and apartments was eventually scaled back in late
2011, following heated criticism from some businesses in the
The DCC decided to withdraw the part of the controversial
harbourside zone, introduced in 2009 after hearings the year
before, in blocks north of Fryatt St.
The zone on the southern side of the Steamer Basin, which
contracted in size, was retained to allow a mixed-use
environment to provide a platform for developers.
Mr Christie understood there remained interest in new
enterprises going into the harbourside area, emphasising it
was not the oil and gas exploration sector, as many had been
Industrially zoned land available around Dunedin at November
Green Island 30.1ha
Kaikorai Valley 3ha
Port Chalmers 3.9ha