Suburban Shopping Areas Tipped for Heritage Status

13 May 2010

Six of Wellington's older suburban shopping areas are earmarked for addition to the District Plan heritage list.

The Council's Strategy and Policy Committee has decided to publicly notify District Plan Change 75, which proposes to add the following shopping areas to the heritage list: Aro Valley, Berhampore (Rintoul Street), Hataitai, Adelaide-Riddiford street corner (Newtown), Newtown shops and the Tinakori shops in Thorndon.

Heritage listing would mean that the buildings are recognised and protected for their heritage value and any major changes to the outside of listed buildings, or demolition of them, would require resource consent.

The Council's Urban Development Portfolio Leader, Councillor Andy Foster, says the groups of buildings nominated for potential heritage areas are of high heritage significance.

"The six proposed heritage areas contribute enormously to Wellington's identity and serve as a link to our past. Council officers and heritage specialists assessed a number of potential heritage areas, before selecting these six on the basis of their significance and coherence. They will join Island Bay shops and several Central City and residential heritage areas listed in recent years."

Cr Foster says changes can happen to buildings in heritage areas however the key thing is that the heritage values are retained.

"A heritage area in the District Plan has little effect on the day-to-day operation and function of businesses within the area. The main effects will be where owners propose alterations or modifications to the exterior of their building. We've had feedback on the importance of signage to retailers. Importantly the size for signs in heritage areas is the same as in other centres, unless buildings in question are also individually listed."

Cr Foster says the Council can help owners of heritage buildings in a number of ways when they want to develop their buildings. "We can provide free conservation advice and technical assistance in order to ensure that development is in keeping with the heritage values of a building. Applications can be made for heritage resource fees to be reimbursed and in some cases, if certain criteria are met, building owners may also be eligible for financial assistance through the Council's Heritage Incentive Fund."

To make a submission on proposed District Plan Change 75, visit the District Plan Changes section of this website after 25 May 2010, or call the Council on (04) 499 4444. Submissions close at 5.00pm on 23 July 2010. Owners opposed to the listing of their property have a right to a hearing, with a further right of appeal to the Environment Court.