Amenity Indicators (what we measure)
Amenity values are natural or physical qualities and characteristics of an area that contribute to people’s appreciation of its pleasantness, and cultural and recreational values.
Having a safe and healthy environment for living, working and recreation is important for Matamata-Piako residents. This involves maintaining generous access to daylight, sunlight and private open space, especially in urban areas.Amenity values can differ in rural areas to those in urban areas, as people in rural areas commonly both live and work on the land, and can be involved in activities that generate noise, odour, dust and other effects.
The amenity and heritage values of Matamata, Morrinsville and Te Aroha could be adversely affected by unsuitable development. Amenity in rural areas can also be compromised by rural activities that generate noise, odour, dust and other effects.
In general, disturbance to amenity values as a result of legitimate farming activities is acceptable; however in urban areas and near large-scale rural industry it is expected that any significant negative effects on amenity values will be avoided, remedied or minimised.
The number of resource consent applications to breach Council's development control rules in the District Plan had decreased since 2009/10, but increased again since 2015/16. This is likely due to the relative number of dwellings being constructed, which has increased over the past two years. In 2014/15 22 of 24 resource consents to breach development controls were for yard encroachments and in 2015/16 it was 44 of 50 consents. In 2016/17 40 of 49 of resource consent applications were for yard encroachments. The other nine consent applications were for three applications to encroach upon the height-to-boundary rules and six applications to exceed the site coverage requirements. The noticeable increase in applications to breach development control rules is in line with the overall increase in the number of building consent applications. Yard areas provide space for outdoor activities and landscaping, and also create a pattern of open space and built up space, which forms the character of the district.
The Council’s Plan Change 47 – Plan Your Town reviews the sections of the District Plan relating to the planning rules and zoning for each of the district’s largest towns three towns and the areas around them. Proposed rule changes include reviewing the building setback distances from boundaries, changes to residential infill subdivision around town centres and identifying likely future urban growth areas. A hearing was held in June 2017 and a decision will be notified later in 2017.