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Planning for Affordable Housing

We’re developing planning rules that would require qualifying developments to provide for some affordable housing, long-term and for low and moderate-income households. This is called inclusionary zoning.

Streamlined Planning Process Documents

Creating inclusive, mixed income communities is fundamental to the economic vitality and liveability of the Queenstown Lakes District. Inclusionary zoning is a planning method which seeks to create affordable housing as development occurs, resulting in neighbourhoods across the district which provide housing options for a range of incomes and households.

Queenstown Lakes District Council (QLDC) has developed four potential approaches to inclusionary zoning based on findings from previous experience with inclusionary zoning, an in-depth analysis of housing demand, current trends in land and house values, and reporting on anticipated costs and benefits of an inclusionary zoning policy in the longer term.

These background reports are all available below.

What does affordable mean?

Affordable housing is housing which is accessible to those on a low to moderate income and costs less than 35% of the household’s income.

Options to consider

QLDC is currently looking at four possible pathways for using inclusionary zoning in the District Plan, ranging from ‘enabling’ through to ‘mandatory’.

Each option is discussed in brief below.

To demonstrate a potential approach, the Council-preferred option (#4) has been developed into a set of sample provisions.

All the proposed policy options would provide housing for the same target group - low to moderate income households, based on area median incomes.


  1. Update the District Plan to reduce and remove controls that affect affordability, and at the same time, negotiate with developers to provide retained affordable housing when Council is able

  2. Update the District Plan to provide a bonus/incentive to developers for the provision of retained affordable housing

  3. Update the District Plan to implement a mandatory requirement for developers to include some retained affordable housing – applied to new developments only

  4. Update the District Plan to implement a mandatory contribution to include some retained affordable housing – applied to both new development and redevelopments.

Streamlined Planning Process

Queenstown Lakes District Council (QLDC) is considering applying to the Minister for the Environment to undertake an alternative plan making process under the Resource Management Act (RMA) called a Streamlined Planning Process (SPP). The SPP processes and timeframes can be customised to achieve a faster outcome than the traditional method of making District Plans and plan changes. See the information sheet for more details.

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