The 2006 Community Charter first introduced the vision, principles and goals for the Greater Christchurch Urban Development Strategy for now and 50 years into the future.

Community Charter poster (March 2006) [PDF 7MB]

This Charter was the first step in defining the Strategy based on what the Greater Christchurch community said in the Options consultation should be done. It was the statement of intent describing what the Forum intended the final Strategy would do.

The Charter recognised that the Strategy needed to satisfy four expectations:

  1. Of the community, who asked for the protection and enhancement of:
    • ecological values, and outstanding natural and rural landscapes
    • productive rural land
    • existing urban centres and development patterns
    • community character, diversity and facilities
    • "sense of place", heritage, open space networks, and urban and site design
    • in the move toward their desired sustainable future;
  2. Of the business sector, by providing better integration between land use infrastructure and funding to support and enhance the prosperous and diverse local economy;
  3. Of the Councils to provide direction for growth and management and community outcomes processes in their:
    • Long-Term Council Community Plans (LTCCP)
    • Regional Policy Statement
    • Regional Land Transport Strategy
    • City and District Plans
  4. The legislative framework, to provide a clear, robust, and integrated implementation framework and process to meet the requirements of the Local Government Act, Land Transport Management Act and Resource Management Act.

Guiding Principles

These principles underpin and provide context for the Strategy, and shape and guide decisions on planning, transport and infrastructure investment. They will also guide the actions of the Strategy as it is implemented.

Using the information gathered from the consultation feedback, the assessment criteria developed for the Options process and relevant guiding national policy documents particularly the Sustainable Development for New Zealand Programme of Action (January 2003), this Charter sets the direction for balancing social, cultural, economic and environmental goals.

Sustainable prosperity is the overarching principle of this Charter and requires having a better understanding of the systems that supports life in the community. This is a broad view, to recognise that our day-to-day activities can simultaneously affect our economy, environment and community.

Sustainable prosperity will be achieved through:

Leadership providing good governance, making decisions, taking action and accepting responsibility, ensuring the impacts and outcomes are monitored, reviewed, and managed effectively.

Partnership working in a collaborative and coordinated manner with one another, the community, strategic partners, government, and other organisations through short-term actions based on long-term goals and continued commitment to effective engagement in respect of strategy implementation.

Responsibility continually working towards ensuring our communities are great places to live, work and play, safe, economically secure and physically and socially healthy .

Resilience managing risk and uncertainty through strategy and implementation frameworks that enhance how individuals, communities and organisations respond to hazards and the unexpected.

Adaptability taking into account the past and anticipating the future, putting in place strategy and implementation frameworks that are able adapt to change.

Innovation replacing the business as usual approach with a more creative, cultural and resourceful approach to find smart answers and solutions that are more collaborative between strategic partners and the community.

Integration integrating environmental, land-use infrastructural, social, cultural, economic and governance goals in all decision-making, policies, plans and activities by recognising the connections between systems, giving effect to the regional and local metropolitan context.

Restoration ensuring our natural systems are valued and protected through restoring and enhancing biodiversity and ecological integrity .

Strategic Direction

These goals set the direction and desired outcomes the Strategy which, through specific and carefully framed policies, initiatives and programmes, will achieve over time.

The strategic aim is to improve the liveability and quality of life for the people of Greater Christchurch while focusing growth within existing urban centres. This requires :

Good governance and leadership to:

  • Continue to work in partnership with the community, Tangata Whenua, strategic partners and central government
  • Prepare a visionary long-term Strategy to ensure strategic integrated planning into:
    • Long-term Council Community Plans
    • Regional Policy Statement and Plan
    • Regional Land Transport Strategy
    • City and District Plans
  • Put in place a strategy and implementation framework that translates vision into action, monitor and review progress at agreed milestones and can adapt to change over the long term
  • Ensure individuals and groups in the community, organisations and government agencies participate effectively in developing the Strategy, and are engaged in implementation
  • Initiate private and public partnerships to support the delivery of the Strategy, and
  • Put in place mechanisms to assist in resolving different points of view and approaches to issues, to achieve collaborative action.

Better manage urban growth to:

  • Define and maintain clear boundaries between urban and rural areas using networks of open space
  • Outline how urban areas will grow and develop
  • Develop existing urban areas in a more concentrated form
  • Develop and support well defined and distinct urban centres and self-sufficient rural towns
  • Ensure the integration of land use, infrastructure and funding
  • Deliver vibrant and diverse city and town centres to live, work and play in, supporting safer and healthier communities with access to facilities
  • Maintain and protect land, sites and structures with heritage value particularly of established suburbs and rural settlements
  • Recognise and protect cultural identities
  • Ensure buildings and housing are energy-efficient, warm, well-built and aesthetically appropriate
  • Preserve, create and link urban and rural open space including parks, recreation areas and natural areas
  • Protect and make effective use of existing and future transportation and service corridors to move goods and people efficiently
  • Ensure public transport, cycling and walking are a part of every life, and

Better manage the environment to:

  • Protect the groundwater aquifers and natural catchments as a top priority
  • Protect natural remnants and the ecosystems they contain
  • Recognise the value of, and protect, the coastline, estuaries and waterways including wetlands
  • Ensure development reinstates and enhances natural systems and environmentally sensitive areas
  • Promote energy and water conservation and ensure clean air, and
  • Protect outstanding landscapes such as the Port Hills and rural outlooks.

Support a prosperous economy to:

  • Maintain a secure and productive resource base, including minimising the loss of productive land
  • Ensure infrastructure is provided in a timely and affordable manner with an environmental focus
  • Protect and enhance strategic regional infrastructure and utility hubs and corridors, including Christchurch International Airport, Lyttelton Port and road and rail connections, and
  • Ensure adequate and appropriate land for commercial and industrial use.