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Under lockdown rules, Christchurch City Council staff have been unable to visit sites in person but have continued to process building and resource consents remotely from their homes.
On site inspections will restart next week with additional health and safety measures in place to help prevent the spread of Covid-19, said city council consenting and compliance general manager Carolyn Gallagher
"These measures include inspectors and engineers wearing personal protective equipment and new protocols being introduced around how they enter and leave a work site and what they do while there."
She says staff have been fully trained on the new ways of working and work sites are also required to have additional safety protocols in place, including a Covid-19 Control Plan.
“The safety of our staff and of those they will be dealing with during site visits is of the utmost importance.”
Ms Gallagher said feedback from the construction industry has been supportive of the new measures.
“It’s critical to have these measures in place so the construction industry can safely start operating again, which is good news for the local and national economy.”
While site inspections are beginning again, individuals and businesses can still apply for building and resource consents electronically, she says.
“Our staff are now able to visit sites in person, but we’ll also continue to be available at the end of a phone or by email.
"We’ll still be carrying out virtual log burner inspections which we set up during the lockdown too, so there are a range of options available to people.”
Building consents are needed to undertake building work and confirm that the planned work complies with the Building Act 2004 and the building code.
Resource consents, which are separate to building consents, are needed when a proposed building or activity doesn’t comply with all the rules in the Christchurch District Plan.
The council also wants to let people know that if they've been doing some "DIY" building work at home during the lockdown they can get in touch to find out whether they need to apply for a Certificate of Acceptance showing their work complies with the current New Zealand Building Code.
To find out more about getting consents:
- Visit the council website, or phone the Duty Building Control Officer on 03 941 8999 or email email@example.com
- Apply for a building consent online or email for advice.
- Apply for a resource consent online or for questions about your application email or call on 03 941 8999. Email here for pre-application planning advice.