Land use changes in the Hurunui district

The Hurunui Environmental Reporting Document (HERD) was adopted in 2007 to monitor the state of the environment and the efficiency and effectiveness of the Hurunui District Plan.  This monitoring is currently in progress as part of the District Plan review.  One of the indicators monitored is the change in land use in the District over the last 10 years by comparing the land use classification of the 2002 and 2012 valuation databases.  A report outlining the results of this comparison was provided to the Council's Strategy and Policy Committee meeting on 12 April.

The results showed that Rural industry remains the largest land use in the District at 93.83%.  However, rural use had reduced by 3.09% over the last 10 years.  Most of the loss was reflected in a 2.83% increase in Recreational use as the result of large areas of land being reclassified under land tenure review.  The St James Conservation Area is currently still classified as Rural industry and represents over 9% of the total Rural industry area.

A small reduction in Residential use and increase in Lifestyle reflected a correction to the classification of smaller parcels located outside urban boundaries.

There was considerable movement between secondary Rural industry uses over 10 years.  Stock finishing was the largest contributor to increases in Dairy, Store livestock, and Market gardens and orchards (which includes vineyards).  Whereas over 60% of the new Forestry area was gained from land formerly classified as Store livestock.  This includes large areas in Lake Sumner Forest Park.

As expected the expansion of dairying was mostly confined to the Amuri Basin apart from two new farms at Parnassus and Greta Valley.  Vineyard expansion occurred around Waipara except for one operation at Spotswood.

The reduction in Rural Vacant land accounted for a significant portion of new Recreational area, rather than contributing to increased rural development.

For further information contact:
Jan Weaver
Policy Planner
Phone 314 0048