The Dunedin City Council has taken the unusual step of
agreeing to connect reticulated water and waste water services
to a rural-zoned subdivision on the fringes of the city.
The council has recently taken a hard-line on such requests,
even where existing infrastructure would allow it without
much effort, wanting to stick with its policy to restrict
City development staff are also generally opposed to rural
and rural-residential zoned properties being connected to
reticulated service, because it can lead to demand for
additional infrastructure and ultimately a loss of rural
amenity and land as it becomes more urbanised.
However, in this case they recommended the council approve
the connection of properties in the proposed area.
''This is unusual. It is not often you will see someone from
city development promoting something like this,'' planner
Paul Freeland told councillors yesterday.
The councillors were considering an application from RPR
Properties Ltd, for water and waste water connections on its
rural-zoned subdivision at 33-49 Dalziel Rd.
The company received consent last year to create six rural
lots, which are already for sale on the site, and three other
lots which could be divided into 20 properties in the future.
The sites would have on-site effluent treatment and rain-fed
water tanks, but the council's decision at the time noted the
site was located close to the city's infrastructure and it
was likely future connections of the reticulated network to
the site would be required if the zoning were ever changed to
The company was not seeking residential rezoning, but now
considered connection would provide a better long-term
solution than individual on-site connections, a report to
Because of the area involved, the application was considered
to be more appropriately treated as an addition of a new
water supply area to the council's water bylaw.
Several neighbouring properties should be included to make
the area contiguous.
Mr Freeland said despite its rural zoning, the area was
considered by staff to be an orderly expansion of an urban
area and an infill of land that could not reasonably be put
to a rural use. Also, rezoning of the area to residential was
being considered as part of the District Plan review.
''We think this area would be good for urban expansion ...
and in the fullness of time have been identified in the
second generation district plan as an area suitable for urban
The risk of not allowing water supply to the area now was
that it would all be developed as rural lots and the
opportunity for compact residential expansion as desired in
the spatial plan would be lost, he said.
Also, there had been a long history with the site.
A private plan change to rezone the site residential was
supported by staff in 2005, but had not gone ahead for
The site had been through various consent processes since to
end up as it was.
Cr Lee Vandervis said it was these iterations which were
The situation today was the result of ''a very clever
developer'' getting what was desired by stealth, he said.
Cr Jinty MacTavish also did not like the position the council
found itself in, but said she would support the move because
it was the best option in a ''bad set of cards''.
This showed how desperately the city need the second
generation district plan in place, she said.
Cr Vandervis was the only councillor of 13 present to vote
against adding the area to the city water supply.