Resource Consenting for Heritage Buildings
There are two types of resource consents – land use and/or subdivision. The majority of heritage building work will require a land use consent.
If you own a recognised heritage building, either Heritage New Zealand Pouhere Taonga (HNZPT) Category 1 or 2, or a building identified as Locally Significant within our District Plan, you may require land use consent to undertake work to your heritage property.
How do I find out if a building is recognised as a heritage building?
Invercargill District Council has a schedule of buildings, structures and places which are considered to be of historical significance to the District. These can be found in Appendix 3 of the District Plan, which also includes the category (if applicable) assigned to the building. View the list at Appendix 3 – Heritage Record.
What heritage building works require land use consent?
Repair and maintenance to preserve the integrity of historic buildings and structures is a permitted activity, provided that the work is undertaken using the same type of material to that originally used, and must retain the original design, form and texture of the feature under repair. So essentially, like-for-like repair and maintenance does not require land use consent.
If you are undertaking work beyond maintenance/repair the requirement for land use consent depends on whether your building is a recognised HNZPT building or identified as Locally Significant within our District Plan.
- HNZPT buildings: Per HH-R8 of our District Plan, any alteration, addition and/or the attaching of any signage to a HNZPT building, structure or place is a discretionary activity (which means it requires land use consent). In addition, HNZPT is regarded as an affected party to all heritage building land use consent applications. Please note this rule is applicable to both interior and exterior works.
- Locally Significant buildings: Please note it is only the façade that is protected on Locally Significant buildings. Per HH-R3 & R4 of our District Plan, any alteration and/or addition to the façade, or attaching of signage to the façade is a discretionary activity (which means it requires land use consent).
How do I contact Heritage New Zealand Pouhere Taonga (HNZPT)?
HNZPT is usually considered an affected party for a land use consent application involving a recognised HNZPT Category 1 or 2 building. As such, applicants are expected to contact them to discuss your project. HNZPT is not required to give formal approval of your project to you before you submit a resource application, however, Council will look for proof of correspondence with HNZPT within your application. During the application process Council will request feedback from HNZPT and take their views into account when making a decision to grant or deny consent.
Our local HNZPT branch is located in Dunedin’s city centre. You can ask Council to put you in touch with their Conservation Advisor or Consents Planner. Otherwise, HNZPT can be reached directly at 03 477 9871 or email@example.com.
How much does a land use consent cost?
The cost for a land use consent application is $1,000 at minimum. If your project affects other building owners, or the wider community that cost will likely rise as processing time increases. Please refer to the Resource Management Fees & Charges for more detailed information.
NOTE: If your proposed work relates positively to the preservation of a recognised heritage building Council may elect to waive the land use consent fee.
What triggers the requirement to bring a whole heritage building up to Building Code compliance?
Below are general scenarios, but it is recommended that you refer to the Building Act 2004 Sections 112 and 115 (hyperlinks below) for detailed explanations or contact Council’s Duty Builder between 9am and 4pm at 03 211 1777 or email firstname.lastname@example.org for further information.
If you plan to make an alteration to your heritage building that requires a relatively straight-forward building consent (for example, relocating load-bearing walls or plumbing fixtures upgrades) the Building Act 2004, Section 112 ‘Alterations to existing buildings’ requires that the building also provide necessary means of escape from fire, as well as access and facilities for persons with disabilities. Detailed information can be found in Section 112 of the Building Act 2004 at Building Act 2004 No 72 (as at 12 April 2022), Public Act 112 Alterations to existing buildings – New Zealand Legislation
If you want to undertake a change of use (for example, converting a commercial building into residential flats) the code compliance increases. Like the above example, you will need to provide necessary means of escape from fire, as well as access and facilities for persons with disabilities. But the building is also required to comply in terms of fire protection of other properties, sanitary facilities, fire-rating performance and structural performance (which may include seismic strengthening). Detailed information can be found in Section 115 ‘Code compliance requirements: change of use’ of the Building Act 2004 at Building Act 2004 No 72 (as at 12 April 2022), Public Act 115 Code compliance requirements: change of use – New Zealand Legislation .
All buildings require maintenance, as their materials eventually decay due to exposure to the elements, as well as wear and tear. These guidelines provide owners with a helpful maintenance checklist for their heritage building.
This brochure was prepared to help owners of heritage properties care for their building exteriors, select era-appropriate colour schemes, and make well-informed decisions when considering the repair and/or painting of a building.
Heritage Design Guidelines
Currently being updated, but original version available upon request.