Part B: Our work in detail

Tāone tupu ora
Urban development

We want to see our city thrive as it grows.



Our work in this area includes enhancing CBD public space, making improvements to the waterfront and suburban centres, developing public spaces such as urban parks and squares, looking after heritage in the city, assessing and issuing building and resource consents, ensuring earthquake-prone buildings are strengthened, and planning for the city’s development.

These activities matter to the lives of individual Wellingtonians and to the community as a whole. They enable the city to grow while retaining its unique sense of place and liveability. They also provide the opportunity for people to live, work and play in an urban environment that is attractive and sustainable.

In this section

This section includes what’s changing since we released Our 10-Year Plan, other key projects coming up, key performance measures and what it costs. There are two groups of activities in this section:

6.1 Urban planning, heritage and public services development (including waterfront development).

6.2 Building and development control.


Snapshot. $440 million value of residential building consents. $272 million value of non-residential building consents. 86% residents agree the central city is lively and attractive. 92% residents agree Wellington is a great place to live, work and play.

What we do – an overviewTop

What’s changing and whyTop

Built Heritage Incentive and Resilience Fund: We are increasing funding to $1 million per year, through two separate funds, to capture a broader range of earthquake resilience projects than the current fund. The two funds are likely to be allocated to the following areas:

Band Rotunda redevelopment: After seeking registrations of interest for the redevelopment of the Band Rotunda at Oriental Bay in mid-2018, Council has accepted a proposal from Cheops Holdings. Cheops specialises in restoring and rejuvenating historic, underutilised buildings across Wellington. Some of their previous projects include the Press Hall precinct, Public Trust Building and 15 Stout Street. The upgrade will result in the rotunda meeting at least 80 percent of the New Building Standards, an upgrade to the interior to suit a hospitality operator, and public access to the building being maintained while also ensuring this landmark contributes to heritage and urban design values of the area. We have included $300,000 in operational funding in the budget to facilitate and contribute to the redevelopment. This proposal allows for the upgrade of a much loved and iconic building on Wellington’s waterfront in a cost-effective manner.

Our work programme 2019/20Top

Earthquake Prone Buildings (EPB): There are currently about 600 EPBs in Wellington. About 120 of these are heritage buildings. Owners of these buildings are required to undertake work to bring them up to a satisfactory level of structural integrity. This year, we will continue to work with building owners and will develop an enhanced advisory service to support this programme of work, as promoted by Inner City Wellington and others. There will be a particular emphasis on buildings that have been identified as Priority Buildings, where timelines for strengthening will be reduced to 7.5 years. We are in liaison with Central Government around the EPB framework and will ensure that the Council and Government effort is integrated and complementary.

Looking aheadTop

Planning for Growth: Wellington's population is predicted to grow to between 250,000 and 280,000 in the next 30 years. We are required, under the National Policy Statement on Urban Development Capacity, to ensure we have enough land available to meet residential and commercial demand across the city for the short, medium and long-term. To ensure we can accommodate this growth we need to have a coordinated plan. We need to review our Urban Grown Plan and the District Plan to be able to direct the expected population growth into the most appropriate places, manage new development to ensure the city remains compact, inclusive, green, resilient, vibrant and prosperous, and to attract meaningful investment.

In May 2019 we consulted on four growth scenarios through our Planning for Growth programme. The submissions we received will inform a spatial plan for the city by early 2020. The spatial plan is a coordinated plan to manage urban growth and development and will set the policy direction to inform the District Plan review.

Making Wellington more accessible: In partnership with the Council’s Accessibility Advisory Group, we will finalise a new three-year Accessible Action Plan for the city. While some actions will be funded from existing work programmes, others may require additional funding. Any new initiatives will be considered in future annual and long-term plans.

What it costsTop

2019/20 Annual Plan $000
Operating expenditure 34,069
Capital expenditure 43,621


Measuring our performanceTop

We use performance measures to track how well we are delivering services against targets The following represents the groups of measures we have for each group of activities. For details of individual performance measures and targets, see Detailed performance information in Part D: Appendices.

We also have outcome indicators to monitor progress toward desired results for the city. These indicators are at least partly out of our control. For these indicators, please refer to Our 10-Year Plan on our website,

Rationale What we measure Activities
6.1 Urban planning, heritage and public spaces development
  • To enable smart growth/urban containment.
  • For open public spaces.
  • For character protection.
  • High-quality development.
  • Protecting heritage.
  • 6.1.1 Urban planning and policy development.
  • 6.1.2 Waterfront development.
  • 6.1.3 Public spaces and centres development.
  • 6.1.4 Built heritage development.
  • 6.1.5 Housing development.
6.2 Building and development
  • To protect public health and safety.
  • For resilience.
  • Effective planning.
  • Timeliness.
  • Customer focus.
  • Compliance.
  • 6.2.1 Building control and facilitation.
  • 6.2.2 Development control and facilitation.
  • 6.2.3 Earthquake risk mitigation – built environment.
  • 6.2.4 Regulatory – building control and facilitation (weathertight homes).