18 Aug 2021

Queenstown community encouraged to give feedback on affordable housing

2:44 pm on 18 August 2021

The Queenstown Lakes District Council is calling for feedback from the community on a plan to increase affordable housing in the area.

South Island residents are waking up to a white blanket of snow as a cold blast works its way up the country.

Queenstown city centre. Photo: RNZ / Nate McKinnon

Median house prices in the district are over $1 million.

The council's Homes Strategy and Action Plan is now out for public consultation.

It is also calling for feedback on inclusionary zoning options for the district plan.

Queenstown Lakes Mayor Jim Boult said the community should look at the information available on both initiatives and share their thoughts.

"These housing measures will set out council's role in influencing change in the housing system through advocacy, partnership and local action, and we're very keen to hear what our community thinks about these proposals," Boult said.

The draft homes strategy sought to improve housing affordability, supply, choice, and quality in the district.

It aimed to increase affordable housing options, ensure a range of housing choices existed for everyone, ensure homes were healthy, warm, and sustainable, and ensure partnerships with the government improved, amplified and accelerated housing outcomes in the district.

The council was also developing planning rules which would require qualifying developments to provide for some affordable housing, long-term and for low- and moderate-income households.

The council said this was an inclusionary zoning approach.

This planning method would require or incentivise developments which met set criteria to provide a portion of the development for affordable housing.

The council said four options were on the table, those were:

  • Option 1: Update the District Plan to reduce and remove controls that affect affordability, and at the same time, negotiate with developers to provide retained affordable housing when Council is able
  • Option 2: Update the District Plan to provide a bonus/incentive to developers for the provision of retained affordable housing
  • Option 3: Update the District Plan to implement a mandatory requirement for developers to include some retained affordable housing - applied to new developments only
  • Option 4: Update the District Plan to implement a mandatory contribution to include some retained affordable housing - applied to both new development and redevelopments.

Feedback on the plans close on Sunday, 26 September and could be shared online.

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