Housing Supply Bill Increases Development Opportunities

4 March 2022

Introduced into Parliament on 19 October 2021, the Resource Management (Enabling Housing Supply and Other Matters) Amendment Bill (Housing Supply Bill) was passed into law on 20 December 2021. The Housing Supply Bill amends the Resource Management Act 1991 (RMA) to enable more as-of-right residential development opportunities.

The changes to the RMA require councils in Auckland, Hamilton, Tauranga, Wellington, and Christchurch:
• to provide for medium density residential development in nearly all residential zones
• to incorporate medium density residential standards and other intensification objectives and policies into their district plans (including the Auckland Unitary Plan); and
• to give effect to objectives and policies in the National Policy Statement on Urban Development 2020.

Plan changes to give effect to the Housing Supply Bill must be notified on or before 20 August 2022.

The type of development that will be enabled by the Housing Supply Bill as permitted activities in most residential zones includes:

• three residential units (dwellings) per site
• maximum building height of 11 meters except that 50% of a roof may reach 12 meters where the entire roof slopes 15° or more
• height in relation to boundary recession plane of 60° measured 4 meters vertically from the boundary (other than road boundaries or internal boundaries)
• setbacks of 1.5 meters for the front yard and 1 meter for all other boundaries
• maximum building coverage of 50% net site area
• minimum outdoor living space of 8 square meters; and
• standards relating to outlook space, windows towards the street, and landscaped area.

Subdivision around existing residential units or in conjunction with a land use consent will be a controlled activity with no minimum site area or shape factor requirements.

Other changes to enable intensification relate to city centre zones, metropolitan centre zones, and areas within a walkable catchment of rapid transit stops. In those areas, buildings of at least six storeys must be provided for. Car parking requirements across the city will also be significantly relaxed.

The plan change process to introduce these new development opportunities will include public notification and a submission and hearing process.

For more information about how the Housing Supply Bill and upcoming plan changes may affect you, please contact Vicki Toan.