Banks Peninsula District Summary [PDF 154MB]

The Greater Christchurch Urban Development Strategy only directly affects growth in the Lyttelton Harbour basin from Lyttelton to Purau. While Akaroa and Little River are not included in the Strategy study area, the impact of tourism and local demand for coastal property is likely to continue growth elsewhere around the Peninsula.

Business as Usual Option

Business as Usual continues current trends of development spreading out around the Greater Christchurch area in new subdivisions north of the Waimakariri River, southwest into Selwyn, around Diamond Harbour and with some housing in urban renewal developments.

Limited urban renewal within Lyttelton could create opportunities to develop attractive mews and townhouses.

With most development spread out around the area, people will spend more time travelling from their homes to work, school and shops. Arterial roads and city streets will become more congested. This will affect Banks Peninsula residents who travel to work in Christchurch.

Walking and cycling may be practical alternatives to driving, and public transport services should be good in Lyttelton. People living around the Lyttelton Harbour basin, in Diamond Harbour, Church, Charteris and Governors Bays are unlikely to have public transport available, and neither walking nor cycling will be viable transport choices.

The anticipated population growth around the Lyttelton Harbour basin is unlikely to be sufficient to support the development of additional community facilities, such as recreation centres and libraries, but will place pressure on existing services and facilities. Residents may need to travel to existing facilities in Lyttelton or Christchurch.

As the resident population ages, demand for services for the aged could become more of a priority. Sporting clubs and even schools could close unless new family-aged residents move to the district.

With growth spreading outward from Christchurch City around towns and into the countryside, there will be fewer opportunities to create large open spaces and regional parks. People will travel further to escape the built up areas and find open space for recreation and leisure.

Impact of Business as Usual Option on Banks Peninsula

  • Increased development in Governors Bay and Diamond Harbour/Church Bay
  • Increased traffic congestion on roads around Lyttelton Harbour basin
  • Growth insufficient to support new community facilities and public transport
  • Some loss of rural character

Option A

Option A concentrates development within Christchurch and the larger towns of Rangiora and Rolleston. Existing housing would be redeveloped (for example, replacing older homes on larger sections with townhouses and apartments) and new subdivisions developed adjacent to existing areas. Development not already planned for the Lyttelton Harbour basin would likely occur on a small scale only.

With 60% of new housing in urban renewal, and only 40% in new subdivisions, growth in Lyttelton and Diamond Harbour would continue, but at a slower pace. Elsewhere development would be limited, to discourage further conversion of farmland and open space to lifestyle and rural-residential developments.

Concentrating development within and around existing urban areas will make some roads more congested. Banks Peninsula residents are unlikely to experience increased congestion on peninsula roads, but travel to Christchurch could be much slower. Increased freight transport using the Lyttelton tunnel may result in delays for peninsula motorists having to travel to Christchurch.

Concentrating development within Christchurch, Rangiora and Rolleston ensures that the existing identity of the Lyttelton Harbour basin communities remains largely unchanged. This should ensure the survival of existing peninsula social networks, community amenities, and existing social, cultural and sporting groups.

By limiting growth to within and around the existing urban areas, green zones and regional parks can be created around each urban area to provide for recreational activities. Outstanding natural landscapes, such as the Lyttelton Harbour basin can be preserved. Harbour residents enjoyment of rural views and lifestyles can therefore be protected and possibly enhanced.

Impact of Option A on Banks Peninsula

  • Very little impact within district
  • Current growth continues but at a slower pace
  • Limited improvement to community facilities or transport choices
  • Semi-rural character of Lyttelton Harbour retained

Option B

Option B balances future urban development between existing towns and urban centres, increasing density in some areas of Christchurch, with some expansion into adjacent areas.

Urban centres or community villages focus around shopping malls and community facilities, including health centres, libraries and cinemas where local residents get many of their day-to-day services, and serve as community meeting places. Lyttelton and Diamond Harbour would both be developed as urban centres.

By developing self-sufficient urban centres or villages local residents could be within walking or cycling distance of their workplaces, schools, shops and other facilities. By increasing the population around urban centres and villages there could be sufficient demand for improved public transport. For example, a regular bus service between Diamond Harbour, Charteris and Church Bays could connect with increased ferry sailings across the harbour to Lyttelton. A car ferry between Lyttelton and Diamond Harbour might even be possible.

Locating development at existing urban centres should strengthen community identity. Existing shopping at urban centres may expand, offering greater product ranges and services in response to their local communities' needs. Community facilities in Lyttelton and Diamond Harbour, such as libraries, swimming pools, health and recreation centres may also be developed attracting people to live within close proximity. This influx of residents will in turn stimulate more economic and social activity at urban centres. Expansion of Diamond Harbour's population might also lead to expanded employment opportunities, particularly within the local service sector, making it possible for people to walk and cycle to work.

With growth restricted to around existing towns, and within the City boundaries, green zones / regional parks could be developed. Lyttelton Harbour basin residents would therefore continue to enjoy views of the Harbour and Port Hills.

Impact of Option B on Banks Peninsula

  • Growth contained in Lyttelton, Diamond Harbour, Church and Charteris Bays
  • Some increase in traffic congestion
  • Opportunity for some new community facilities and improved public transport
  • Semi-rural character of Lyttelton Harbour retained

Option C

Option C disperses development out around the Greater Christchurch area away from established urban areas.

About 90% of housing development would be in new subdivisions and rural residential developments in areas to the southwest of Christchurch City around Rolleston and Lincoln, north of the Waimakariri River, around Pegasus Bay and Rangiora, and around the Lyttelton Harbour Basin, from Lyttelton to Corsair Bay, and from Governors Bay to Diamond Harbour. Christchurch would be contained within its existing boundaries with just 30% of development being in urban renewal.

The rural nature of Teddington and Charteris Bay would change as farmland was zoned for lifestyle blocks and rural residential developments. Governors Bay, Church Bay and Diamond Harbour would become more densely developed as larger tracts of land were subdivided.

With development spread out around the Lyttelton Harbour basin, people will spend more time travelling from their homes to work, school and shops. Many residents will still work in Christchurch, so roads around the harbour basin will become more congested as walking, cycling and public transport are unlikely to be attractive alternatives to driving. Students will also need to continue travelling to Christchurch to attend school, university and polytechnics.

There is likely to be a long period where existing facilities, sports and cultural groups are either enhanced with the arrival of new residents or replaced by new facilities and groups more in tune with new residents' lifestyles. The character of existing communities in Diamond Harbour, Church, Charteris and Governors Bays will undoubtedly change.

By encouraging growth to spread outward, the opportunity to create large open spaces and regional parks is reduced. The semi-rural nature of the Lyttelton Harbour basin could be lost as open space was developed into rural subdivisions. Some views of farmland would be replaced by views of houses and roads.

Impact of Option C on Banks Peninsula

  • Increased development around Lyttelton Harbour from Lyttelton to Purau
  • Increased traffic congestion on roads
  • Growth too dispersed to support new community facilities and public transport
  • Significant loss of rural character and change in community identity