Hundreds more ask for zoning review

RACHEL YOUNG
Last updated 05:00 22/06/2012

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Hundreds more Christchurch property owners have applied for a review of their land zoning.

Canterbury Earthquake Recovery Authority (Cera) chief executive Roger Sutton said another 313 applications for a zoning review had been lodged since last Friday, when the review process was announced.

Of those, 268 are green-zoners who want to be rezoned red, and 25 are red-zoners wishing to go green.

There had also been applications that did not fit the review criteria, including 17 people who applied for a change in their Technical Category (TC) and a green-zoner who applied to be rezoned orange.

Sutton said those applications would be rejected.

"The review is looking at the green and red zones only. While people who are green zone will have a Technical Category, it is not that part of their designation that the advisory group will be reviewing. [And] going back to orange is not going to happen."

An advisory group, made up of three Cera officials with expertise in public policy, law and geotechnical engineering, and an independent member, Fisher & Paykel Appliances chairman Keith Turner, will assess whether zoning changes are appropriate by considering a variety of scenarios, including whether the original zoning was inconsistent with Cabinet classifications or whether there were boundary anomalies.

About 550 property owners had contacted Cera over the past year to request a review of their zone status.

Among them was a group of 14 baffled Burwood homeowners who were living in a predominantly red-zoned Christchurch street.

Kiri Reynolds' home is among a cluster in the middle of Stour Dr that were zoned TC3 or "green-blue" last year despite the rest of street being zoned red.

Reynolds said about 12 of the homeowners would be applying to go red before June 30, the final date for flat-land property owners to ask for the review.

Rezoning her "munted" home would give her family a better future, she said.

Wider Earthquakes Community Action Network spokesman Rev Mike Coleman said it was unfortunate the review process was unavailable for the more than 5000 people who had already accepted Government offers, some of whom may have wanted their zoning reviewed, pushing application numbers even higher.

The advisory group is expected to report back to homeowners by July 30.

A similar review structure would be available for the 1700 Port Hills homeowners still in the white zone once their rezoning process had been completed.

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- The Press

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