Using the District Plan

A step-by-step explanation on how to use the District Plan.

Accessing the District Plan

There are two ways to access the District Plan. The first is to use the traditional PDF documents, which can be found here. We have also recently completed our new ePlan, an innovative new way of navigating the District Plan. This has a large assortment of useful features, such as quick links between sections, pop-up definitions, and the ability to show only the parts of the Plan that are relevant to your property. 

Using the ePlan

1.    Search for your property
There are two ways to find your property. The first is to use the map viewer - click and drag your mouse to move around and use your middle mouse button to zoom. The second is to type your address in the search bar at the top of the screen.

Once your property is selected, click 'Show District Plan for: ' to enter the District Plan.

2.    Check for property or area-specific provisions
Click on the 'Specific Rules' tab to see what property or area-specific provisions apply to your property.

Alternatively, click the orange 'Property Report' button is create a two-page summary of the property, including the zoning, specific provisions, an aerial image, and a District Plan map.

3.    Changes to the District Plan.
Because there are some changes to the District Plan that are still in process, check the 'Plan Change' tab on the right of the screen to see if any Plan Changes may be relevant to the site.

4.    Explore the District Plan provisions for your property

Explore the chapters shown on the right of the screen, which are those that may be relevant for your property. In each, the ePlan will show the contents which may be relevant.  

For further information on how to use the ePlan, see the guide on the right-hand panel of all ePlan screens.

Using the District Plan PDFs

To find out what is allowed to happen on a piece of land or in a neighbourhood, refer to:

Volume 3: Maps

Having selected the map you're interested in:

  1. Check which activity area the site is in.
    The colour of the site will refer to a particular activity area, or zone. This will guide you to the appropriate polices and rules in Volume 1.
  2. Check if there are any "overlays".
    Overlays are represented on the District Plan maps - they can cover large areas, so you may need to look at the whole neighbourhood.

    The different overlays on the maps represent various types of overlays, such as designations, Māori precincts, natural hazard areas, heritage areas, ridgelines and hilltops, or a reference to special rules in the Plan. The legend indicates what the different features on the maps refer to.

    In most cases, the provisions associated with these overlays are in the chapters covering the underlying area or zone. However, in some cases they are contained in a separate chapter. For example, heritage provisions are in Chapters 20 and 21, and designations are in Chapter 24.

  3. Check for symbols on the site.
    Symbols can represent a heritage tree or building, or a Māori site. If there are symbols, you will need to look at the heritage section (Chapters 20 and 21 of Volume 1) of the Plan.
  4. Check for special provisions.
    Maps 32 - 61 show where specific rules apply, for example areas close to the airport, on ridgelines, or in commercial areas.
  5. Changes to the District Plan.
    Because there are some changes to the District Plan that are still in process, check the list of active plan changes and variations as well as the operative District Plan.

More information

District Plan team

Phone (04) 499 4444