When you hear the term Planner, what do you think? Hopefully it doesn’t conjure up images of Jennifer Lopez and Matthew McConaughey in the really cheesy Wedding Planner movie!
At Planning Plus, we’re a team of environmental planners. We’ve studied planning, spent many years being planners and love planning. But… what is a planner? What do we do? And why does someone need a planner?
What is a Planner?
We are Environmental Planners. That means we work on projects that shape the physical, environmental and economic development of urban, rural and coastal areas in New Zealand.
The New Zealand Resource Management Act (RMA) sets out the framework for how we should manage our environment. It is based on the principle of sustainable management and requires us to consider the effects of our activities on the environment. It allows communities to formulate their own plans (both District and Regional) which provide specific rules on how land can be developed, and the activities which can occur on it. If a proposal is beyond the scope of what was envisaged for the site (a permitted activity), then a resource consent is required.
The legislative framework of the RMA and its associated rules can be overwhelming. That is where we come in - the specialised help of a planner is increasingly important for projects to minimise delays and ensure correct procedures are followed.
What do we do?
As planners, we understand the RMA and related legislation including District and Regional Plans. We also have an in depth understanding of local government processes and the requirements for resource consent applications, submissions and providing policy advice.
At Planning Plus we can help navigate you through all the legislative requirements. At the beginning of the process (for a resource consent), we will assess the suitability of a site for development. We would review the specific rules that would apply to your proposal, and engage any relevant experts required.
It is important to do as much research as possible at the beginning of the process to determine the suitability of the project on that specific site. Our knowledge can help you make an informed decision on the project before issues arise.
If a resource consent application is required, we can prepare the application for you, lodge it with Council, and represent you throughout the process.
A resource consent applications will need an Assessment of Environmental Effects (AEE). In order to complete an AEE, a comprehensive understanding of the environmental effects of the development is required, as is an assessment against all the relevant legislation. As planners, we can prepare a comprehensive AEE for you in the required format.
Why do you need a Planner?
You need a planner to guide you through the complicated processes involved with development. Whether it’s a new build, creating a business premise or subdivision you need expert advice on how the process works.
Our understanding of the legislation and how the system works, enables the process to run smoothly and positively. We can also advise you if your project is worth pursuing, saving you time and money potentially barking up the wrong tree.
Do you have a project in mind, but you aren’t sure where to start? Feel free to contact us for some friendly advice on the first steps.
As with all our blogs, the information detailed here is general in nature and meant as a preliminary guide only. This should not be substituted for your own investigations or use of your own professional’s. Planning Plus is not liable for any errors or omissions.