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Plan Change 48 - Protected Trees

Plan Change 48 reviewed the parts of the District Plan relating to Protected Trees (Section 10 and Schedule 3). This plan change became operative on May 24, 2017.

Section 10 contains the rules that relate to the pruning, maintenance and removal of protected trees; Schedule 3 includes a register of all the protected trees in our district.

The Plan Change updated Schedule 3 to ensure that it continues to represent the most significant trees in the District. All of the currently protected trees in the district have been assessed by arborists Arbor Care using the Standard Tree Evaluation Method (STEM), which assesses and scores trees based on a number of factors (such as form, health, community benefit and rarity).

Council has agreed to protect trees of a high standard and remove from the schedule those trees that do not meet a STEM threshold of 140 points. In addition, the plan ensures that rules in Section 10 relating to protected trees in District Plan offer landowners increased flexibility to carry out maintenance and pruning work while still protecting significant trees.

The full plan change documents are available below:


Appeal resolved

Notified inviting submissions from 11 November - 10 December 2015
Notified inviting further submissions which closed on 18 February 2016
A hearing was held on 4 May 2016
The Decision was notified on 6 July 2016
Appeal received 15 August 2016
Appeal resolved by Environment Court consent order (PDF, 1.6MB) on 30 March 2017
The plan change became operative on 24 May 2017


Notified Plan Change

Volume 1 – Analysis of Costs, Benefits and Alternatives

Volume 2 – District Plan Maps and STEM Assessment Register


Submissions and further submissions

Public notice


The hearing report and accompanying documentation can be accessed below:


Public notice

Decision Report

Appendix A

Appendix A - District Plan Changes

Appendix A - District Plan Maps

Appendix B

S32AA Report

Appendix A - summary of sumissions and staff recommendations

Appendix B - District Plan Maps

Appendix C - District Plan Changes

Appendix D - Submissions and further submissions 

Appendix E - Legislative requirements

Appendix F - STEM assessments - Matamata, Morrinsville, Te Aroha and additional assessments.

Appendix C

Appendix C - summary of submissions and staff recommendations

Notice of Appeal

  • Notice of Appeal (pdf, 2mb). Received 15 August 2016
  • Outcome of appeal: This appeal was resolved at a judicial settlement conference on 17 March 2017

If you have any questions about the plan change please contact Mark Hamilton on 07 884 0060.

To keep up to date with proposed plan changes, register for updates on the sign up page and choose 'District Plan' as a topic of interest.