In the first three quarters of this financial year (ending 31 March), the number of building consent applications received rose 19 per cent to 1287, compared to the previous period. The consents have a combined value of $377.7 million, up 49 per cent from the previous period.
Council has continued to process and issue building consents during lockdown, granting 94 consents with a total value of $15.6 million since 25 March 2020.
Hutt City Council is also one of only a handful of councils processing LIMS (land information memorandums) during lockdown.
Helen Oram, Acting General Manager City Transformation, says continuing to process consents during lockdown was a tough test of Council’s systems, but a focused effort by staff ensured there has been little disruption.
“While Covid-19 throws up a good deal of economic uncertainty, Lower Hutt still needs more housing and the right kind of housing for a growing and changing population, so the numbers suggest we’re heading in the right direction.”
A recent plan change, that introduces medium-density housing in eight suburban centres and removes some of the barriers to infill development and dwellings like tiny houses, has been stirring additional interest in residential development in the city, she says.
Council is also receiving a steady stream of applications for prefabricated residential buildings and classrooms for the Ministry of Education.
With the colder months fast approaching, Council will ensure the processing of consents for the installation of wood burners is not impacted by Covid-19.
During alert level 3, most building inspections will be able to be done remotely. The building consents team will advise applicants on what evidence needs to be provided for applications to proceed.