May 20, 2024

Obligate Law

Professional Law Makers

Port Hills Zoning Update

2 min read
Port Hills Zoning Update

Port Hills residents would have been awaiting last Friday’s announcement by Earthquake recovery minister the Hon Gerry Brownlee with a mixed range of emotions. For many, being rezoned red was a welcome relief and the promise of further monies for the value of their land whilst for others, such zoning was unwelcome.

Until last Friday there were a total of 1,558 Port Hills properties awaiting land zoning decisions. 166 of those have stayed white pending further assessment which must be a source of much frustration for the owners who are left in limbo for a further period.

1,107 residential properties were rezoned green which opens the door for the owners of those properties to commence negotiations with their insurers and EQC with regard to repairs.

285 property owners in the Port Hills now face the reality that their properties have been zoned red. The properties in question are ones which were considered severely at risk or which had been largely destroyed. Many of the newly red zoned homes are in areas which have experienced cliff collapse or which are still at very real risk of serious rock fall.

The likely cost is in the region of $205 million and in this instance is to be shared equally by the Crown and the Christchurch City Council.

The same two offers which have been extended to other red zone property owners by the crown will also be offered to the newly zoned Port Hills owners with letters to be sent to owners immediately.

The geotechnical analysis techniques employed in Christchurch are the most specific ever used which will mean that Christchurch is now the yardstick for the rest of the world when it comes to the process involved in assessing land at risk due to seismic activity.

As has been the case with previous red zone decisions not all owners are happy with the decision reached. In some cases homes on one side of a street are red zone because of susceptibility to rock fall whereas those on the other side of the road further down the same hill are green. Understandably that does not make a lot of sense to some land owners.

Of the final group of 166 white zone properties, 158 of them can expect a decision by the middle of August whilst 8 are in an area particularly at risk of severe land slip and will have to wait until October for clarification of where they stand.

If you are one of the newly red zoned property owners and need assistance from a Christchurch Solicitor specialising in these matters contact us by clicking either of the links in this article.

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