How we identify and protect historic heritage is an important part of the district plan review.
History is important to people’s sense of identity and belonging. Personal and shared history is tied to the places and buildings which survive from our past. For mana whenua, sites associated with history and ancestry are of great cultural and personal value.
Places like Te Puni Urupā, Pito One Pā, Waiwhetu Pā and Owhiti Urupā are historically important both locally and nationally, as well as having great cultural and personal connections to mana whenua.
Lower Hutt is a renowned centre of modernist architecture, Petone’s Patrick Street Worker’s Settlement is the country’s first attempt at state housing, and the Jackson Street Heritage Precinct attracts people from across the region. These examples, and a multitude of individual historic sites and buildings, are central to Lower Hutt’s story and make strong contributions to the city’s look and feel.
Heritage and the district plan
Hutt City Council is required by Central Government and Greater Wellington Regional Council policies to identify and protect historic heritage.
The Resource Management Act (RMA) requires councils to protect historic heritage as a “matter of national importance”.
The Greater Wellington Regional Policy Statement, derived from the RMA, also requires the identification and protection of heritage. It also sets out the criteria for identifying heritage buildings and sites. See page 49 of the Regional Policy Statement (for more information).
The district plan lists each protected property, and has policies and rules that define how they will be protected.
Not all of our historic properties have been listed in the district plan. In some cases, buildings perceived by some to be historic heritage, have been demolished because they were not listed in the district plan.
Meanwhile, the growing demand for land and housing in the city poses a potential threat to existing historic heritage.
Currently there are only around 100 buildings in Lower Hutt identified and individually listed as historic heritage, as well as three historic heritage areas.
Historic Heritage buildings contribute to the distinctive character of the city and help tell the story of Lower Hutt throughout its development. Examples range from late colonial dwellings through to post-world war two modernist buildings.
Historic Heritage areas are clusters of historic buildings that have special character and heritage values worthy of preserving for present and future generations. Examples include the Jackson Street and Patrick Street heritage areas.
Sites of cultural significance to Māori
These include wāhi tapu – sacred places of spiritual and cultural significance relating to the connections with tupuna (ancestors) and historical events.
Archaeology is the discovery, recovery and interpretation of surviving evidence of past human activity. The Heritage New Zealand Pouhere Taonga Act 2014 requires that all archaeological sites, whether recorded or unrecorded, are protected.
Identifying heritage buildings and sites
Heritage specialists, using documents, photographs and maps, have carried out research to identify heritage values in the city.
A list of potential buildings has been drawn up and the specialists will now look at some of these properties to verify their initial research. The specialists may want to talk to some property owners to get their feedback and gather additional information.
Council staff will consider this feedback before creating a list of buildings for protection.
Council will then review the effectiveness of the current district plan’s protections of historic heritage.
Council intends to notify a proposed district plan, including historic heritage protections in 2022. Affected property owners will be able to submit on the proposed district plan at this point.
Frequently asked questions
View the frequently asked questions.
You can contact the District Plan team at: firstname.lastname@example.org