Growing Places e-newsletter

Here’s the latest information about building consents and resource consents from Waikato District Council.

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Team update

Consents Team Update

The Consents Team is very busy with the countdown to the end of the year.  It has been another busy one for us as we continue to processes a wide range of land use and subdivision consents all over the district. 

Sadly we are saying goodbye to Sarah Wilson who is leaving us to take up work in Rotorua.  We are currently recruiting for a few other roles so hope to let you know who we have on board in the new year.

Building Team update

The number of building consent applications we’ve received is higher than the same time last year. The Building Team is working hard to get the consents issued in a timely manner.

We are currently receiving approximately 70% of building consents in an electronic format but we’d like to get this up to 95-100 %. We’re hearing this is saving people time and money so, if you aren’t doing it already, we encourage you to start submitting your applications digitally. If you are unsure on how to do this please contact us on 0800 492 452 and ask for the building desk to get some guidance.

The team continues to work on identifying Earthquake prone buildings and notifying owners of their responsibilities. They are also continuing to inspect swimming pools throughout the district. In recent times we have been able to help other councils in the Waikato Building Consent Group with inspection and processing assistance.

Our team is also continuing to focus on upskilling so that we can serve our customers better. A number of staff are working toward diploma level qualifications or attending training.  

 

Staff Profile: Meet Louis van der Westhuizen

image of manMeet Louis van der Westhuizen, one of our Building Review Officers. Louis is originally from South Africa but he’s called New Zealand home since 2001.

Louis has previously worked at Otorohanga District Council as a Building Control Officer. He enjoys playing golf and going for walks when the weather permits.

“With a small stint in Auckland at the beginning, I eventually moved to the Waikato where I’ve been ever since.”

 

 

Processing statistics

Here are the latest numbers for building and resource consents, as well as LIMs and new lots.

What's happening: New causeway and bridge at Raglan

The Rangitahi Peninsula in Raglan was rezoned for residential development in 2015 following the decision on Private Plan Change 12. The development of the peninsula is governed by the Rangitahi Structure Plan and is split into 7 different precinct areas (A to G), each with its own identified neighbourhood character and specified sets of key elements for achieving these outcomes.

To date, Precinct’s A, B and D have been consented to enable development of a total of 259 residential lots, 3 mixed use lots, 6 comprehensive residential development lots, 1 commercial lot, 6 recreation reserves, 2 local purpose drainage reserves, a series of integrated walkways and cycle ways, several shared access lots and roading network.

A new consented bulk water main from Te Hutewai Reservoir running through the development to Opotoru / Wainui Rd intersection has been laid and is currently going through testing phases. The water main will service the Rangitahi Peninsula as well as providing security of supply for the rest of Raglan. A new wastewater pump station to service the Rangitahi Peninsula is nearing completion and a dedicated new wastewater rising main from the new pump station to the Raglan wastewater treatment plant has been laid and tested.

Work is well underway with the development of Precinct A at the head of the peninsula with completion expected to occur in April 2020.   The construction of Precinct B has also begun and is expected to be completed by June 2020.

As part of the development, Opotoru Road has been upgraded and new causeways and bridge constructed providing access to the peninsula. The bridge is expected to be open to the public once Precinct A is completed. 

All the lots in Precinct A have been sold and most of the lots in Precinct B have also been presold.


Process focus:

Submitting your building consent electronically

Do you submit your building consent application electronically or do you still send in paper versions?

If you aren’t submitting your building consent electronically we’d love to know why. Please email communications@waidc.govt.nz. Your information will help us understand how we can make it easier for you. 

 

Changes to be aware of: Watercare services

On 1 October Waikato District Council entered into a long term agreement with Watercare Services Limited (Watercare). Watercare will now operate and maintain water, wastewater and stormwater services in the district. The agreement is expected to benefit the community in a number of ways including having the ability to leverage Watercare’s expertise and larger scale.

This builds on Council’s current relationship with Watercare who already provide drinking water and wastewater treatment services to our North Waikato communities. We will retain ownership of the infrastructure assets and a Council-appointed Waters Governance Board has been established to govern the commercial arrangement.

With the recent change over to Watercare, this will not change how applications for landuse or subdivision consents are assessed and processed within Council.

 

Building Code changes

There are a number of changes to the Building Code that you should be aware of. You’ll find information about these changes here: https://www.building.govt.nz/about-building-performance/news-and-updates/all-news-and-updates/updates-to-the-building-code-will-make-it-easier-to-comply/

 

Swimming pool

Helpful tips and reminders

Here are some tips and reminders that we hope will make it easier for you when you are working with us, or when you are compiling an application.

Christmas dates: statutory close-down period

All Waikato District Council offices close at 3pm on 24 December. Our offices will open again on 6 January.

This year the statutory close-down period is from 20 December to 10 January (inclusive) for building and resource consents, LIMs and Development Contribution Reconsiderations. 

The statutory close-down period means that the statutory clocks for processing of any of these applications will stop during this time. We’ll continue to accept lodgement of applications over this time but the clocks won’t run. 

For those of you seeking to obtain LIMs prior to the statutory close-down period, you will need to lodge your LIM application along with the required fee by the 9 December in order to receive it by the 20 December (10 working day service).  If you require an urgent LIM (5 working day service) you will need to lodge your LIM application no later than the 16 December. 

Common Further Information Requests on Building Consent applications

Here are the main reasons we’ve had to request further information from applicants. This slows down the process for you, so we suggest you check this list before submitting your application.

  1. Planning issues: Planning issues have not been identified early in the process. Investigate planning requirements before submitting a building consent application by requesting a PIM and/or requesting a Planning pre-application meeting or speaking to our Duty Planners.
  2. Products information: Lack of supporting documentation for proprietary products, especially those that are relatively new in the New Zealand market to demonstrate the compliance pathway to achieve compliance with the building code.
  3. Insufficient applications lodged: Essential items are missing from the application. The application check-sheet https://www.buildwaikato.co.nz/most-popular/application-forms-checklists/applicant-checklists/    is a handy checklist for ensuring all items have been considered when lodging an application for building consent. You must submit a copy with every application.
  4. Geotechnical Engineering & Foundation design: The foundation design is not coordinated with the recommendations from the geotechnical investigation report. The foundation recommendations from the geotechnical report need to reflect the foundation design and construction drawings submitted.
  5. Structural: No confirmation of whether a producer statement for construction monitoring (PS4) will be supplied and no schedule provided of the construction monitoring to be undertaken. Where significant specific engineering design (SED) elements are included in the building work, ensure the application documentation includes a schedule of construction monitoring, and confirmation that a PS4 will be supplied.

Common reasons CCCs are failing the final inspections

Here are some of the common reasons we’ve had to refuse a Code of Compliance Certificate.

We suggest you check this list to avoid making the same mistakes. If you have any questions, please feel free to phone us on 0800 492 452 and ask for the building desk.

  1. Works not fully completed at time of final inspection booking resulting in a failed inspection and a re-inspection booking required.
  2. Building elements or construction changing during the build and amendments have still not been submitted for building review and/or approved.
  3. Documentation not received for CCC completion.
  4. Work has been completed some time ago this varies between 5 and 20 years in some cases and puts Council in a position where it cannot approve a final inspection or issue the CCC as Council cannot be satisfied that the building elements will meet there durability requirements.
  5. Contractual agreements: The developer may have completed their part of the contract but there are some owners care items that are not completed. For example, the owner will be tiling the wet areas, painting the exterior of the house etc.  If the owners care items are part of the work required to be completed for the building consent, then regardless of who does this work, Council cannot approve the final inspection or issue a CCC.

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