Outram land rezoning hearing for second developer

The second of two developers proposing to build new subdivisions in Outram will have its application to change the district plan heard this week.

Like Two Note Ltd, which is awaiting a decision after the Dunedin City Council's hearings committee heard its application last year, Balmoral Developments (Outram) Ltd also faces initial opposition to its plans from council planners.

The developers both want rural land rezoned for residential use, together allowing up to 52 new homes to be built in the small rural township, which consisted of just 249 houses in total at the last census.

Two Note's plans involve rezoning 7.7ha of rural land in Formby St to allow the company to apply for consent for 28 houses to be built.

There were 28 submissions on the plans, 23 of them opposed, including a group submission by nine worried residents.

Balmoral Developments and an adjoining landowner, who want to build 24 homes on 6.7ha of rural land beside State Highway 87, Holyhead Rd and Mountfort St, will have their application heard by the Dunedin City Council hearings committee tomorrow and on Thursday. Their plans attracted 15 submissions, and two further submissions in response, including opposition from the Otago Regional Council, which cited issues such as water quality concerns and seismic risks that made the site ''unsuitable for development''.

The subdivision would be near the North Taieri fault, and the site's underlying soil composition meant it was ''possibly susceptible'' to liquefaction and settlement in an earthquake, it warned. Of the original submissions, 10 were opposed, three were neutral and two were in support. Neighbours expressed concern about stormwater run-off, flooding, traffic congestion, building height, the amenity of the township's entrance and pressure on existing infrastructure.

The New Zealand Historic Places Trust did not object to the plans, which included preservation of the historic Balmoral homestead on site, built in 1857, and its outbuildings.

In a report to the hearings committee, council planner Emma Christmas recommended the committee reject the application to rezone the site.

Among other reasons, the proposal was generally inconsistent with the objectives and policies of the sustainability section of the district plan, and the spatial plan, and did not represent an efficient use of the land, she said.

It would potentially affect the water supply to existing houses in Outram, and increase the storm-water run-off.

The site was also on high-class soils, and, should it be developed, the soils could not be used productively either by current or future generations, she said.

Council planners also initially recommended the plan change application of Two Note be rejected, but partway through that hearing did an about-turn and recommended the committee support the application, because Two Note had addressed most of the planners' concerns, particularly those about infrastructure and amenity.

- debbie.porteous@odt.co.nz

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