Hon Poto Williams, the Associate Minister for Greater Christchurch Regeneration (the Minister), announced on 15 September 2020 that she has approved the section 71 proposal to provide for commercial film or video production facilities in Christchurch.
The approval was made under sections 69 and 71 of the Greater Christchurch Regeneration Act 2016 (GCR Act).
The Proposal, which was prepared by Regenerate Christchurch, identified the film industry as an immediate regeneration opportunity and potential growth area for Christchurch. It provides for the development and operation of commercial and film production facilities in seven zones in Christchurch considered appropriate for this kind of activity.
The full title of the Proposal is:
Proposal to exercise the power under section 71 of the Greater Christchurch Regeneration Act 2016 to provide for the development and operation of commercial film or video production facilities.
On this page:
- Decision to approve the Proposal
- The written comment stage
- Overview of the Proposal
- About the Proposal
- The process
Decision to approve the Proposal
In making her decision, the Minister took into account the Proposal, the 156 written comments received, and the requirements of the GCR Act.
Of the 156 written comments received, 153 supported and 3 opposed the Proposal.
For more information about the Minister’s decision:
The amendments to the Canterbury Regional Policy Statement and the Christchurch District Plan will take effect on 13 October 2020.
The written comment stage
Anyone could make a written comment, which had to be received by 5pm Wednesday, 5 August 2020.
All written comments received were considered and helped the Minister decide whether to approve the Proposal.
Overview of the Proposal
The Proposal, prepared by Regenerate Christchurch in response to a request from Christchurch City Council, identified the film industry as an immediate regeneration opportunity and a potential growth area for Christchurch.
Regenerate Christchurch considered that Christchurch was not currently in a position to respond to this opportunity because permanent commercial film or video production facilities were not specifically considered or provided for within the Christchurch District Plan. This was considered to be a barrier for development.
The Minister received the Proposal and supporting information from Regenerate Christchurch on 18 June 2020.
The Proposal refers to the following three reports:
- Boffa Miskell, Film Studio Proposal: Planning Assessment prepared for Regenerate Christchurch
- Development Christchurch Limited, Economic Benefit of Production Studios for the Greater Christchurch Region
- ChristchurchNZ, The Economic Impact of the Screen Entertainment Industry in Canterbury
The Proposal also refers to a concise statement of views of the strategic partners and the Chief Executive of the Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet on an earlier draft of the proposal.
The amendments apply to seven zones in the Christchurch District. The amendments are intended to provide a clearer, more certain, and more enabling regulatory environment, encouraging the establishment of commercial film or video production facilities.
The changes include:
- specific recognition for "commercial film or video production activities" in the Christchurch District Plan, and express provision in the Canterbury Regional Policy Statement for these activities to occur
- making "commercial film or video production" a permitted activity in seven zones, considered appropriate for this kind of development, in Christchurch district (the zones being Commercial Mixed Use, Commercial Central City Mixed Use, Industrial General, Industrial Heavy, Industrial Park, Rural Urban Fringe, and Rural Templeton)
- a number of standards and rules to ensure appropriate environmental outcomes.
(Refer to the Proposal for full details of the changes)
Resource consents are still likely to be required for aspects of commercial film or video production activities. However, the consent process overall will be more enabling, certain, timely and cost effective than provided for by the Christchurch District Plan prior to the changes taking effect.
This is the last section 71 proposal to be considered by the Minister. The Greater Christchurch Regeneration Amendment Act 2020 was passed in late June, repealing certain provisions and therefore removing the Minister's section 71 powers. As the Minister received this Proposal on 18 June 2020, prior to the enactment of the Amendment Act, this process was able to continue as if the section 71 power had not been repealed.
In developing the Proposal, Regenerate Christchurch asked the strategic partners (Environment Canterbury, Te Rūnanga o Ngāi Tahu, Christchurch City Council, Selwyn and Waimakariri District Councils), and the Chief Executive of the Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet for their views on a draft of the Proposal, as part of the process required by the Greater Christchurch Regeneration Act 2016.
Regenerate Christchurch considered the feedback in finalising the Proposal, and then submitted it to the Minister for decision-making under section 67.
The Minister publicly notified the Proposal in the Gazette on Tuesday, 7 July 2020 and The Press on Wednesday, 8 July 2020, and invited people to give their views in writing on the Proposal by 5pm Wednesday, 5 August 2020.
Anyone could make a written comment. 156 comments were received, including two that arrived shortly after the deadline, which the Minister decided to accept.
All the written comments received were considered by the Minister in making her decision to approve the Proposal.
On 15 September 2020, the Minister announced she had approved the Proposal.