Stormwater key focus of funding applications
9 September 2021
Stormwater investment to support housing is the focus of three applications by Rotorua Lakes Council to the Government’s Infrastructure Acceleration Fund.
Elected members were presented with a summary of Council’s funding applications at today’s Strategy, Policy & Finance committee meeting. Council is seeking a total of $113 million from the fund to invest in critical stormwater infrastructure that will help to accelerate proposed housing development in the central, western and eastern parts of Rotorua city.
The funding would enable Council to bring forward infrastructure investment that is planned as part of Council’s 2021-31 Long-term Plan.
It would also support future greenfield development, and intensification in the urban areas of Rotorua. Intensification means the development of smaller types of homes like duplexes, terraced housing and apartments would be achievable. This would ultimately mean more homes for our community and would create opportunities for land owners in Rotorua who want to develop their land.
District Development Deputy Chief Executive Jean-Paul Gaston says this funding would help to fast-track the development potential of upward of 5,000 homes in Rotorua,
“The simple fact is that Rotorua needs more homes to solve the housing crisis we are facing. Our district is growing and this work is about ensuring that everyone in our community has access to safe and affordable housing in well-connected neighbourhoods.
“What’s been identified in these applications is not new. This is planning that Council and our partners have been developing for a number of years, and the Infrastructure Acceleration Fund provides a mechanism to fast forward what we’ve committed to investing in over the next 10 to 30 years as part of the 30-year Infrastructure Strategy.
“If we are successful in gaining funding, we would essentially be able to deliver the majority of the stormwater components in the strategy in the first seven years.”
The opportunities outlined in the applications propose to unlock and accelerate developments that have already been fully planned in accordance with the Resource Management Act (eg Pukehangi Heights and Wharenui Road).
“Housing is a key priority for Rotorua and for Council – we need more homes of all types,” Mayor Steve Chadwick says.
“Support from this Government fund would enable us to fast-forward infrastructure projects we have identified in our infrastructure strategy, enabling housing development to progress more quickly.
“Given the housing crisis in Rotorua, we would expect we will get a share and can get on with infrastructure projects to support much-needed housing underway as soon as possible.”
Council has been working in partnership with Te Arawa and Government agencies such as Kāinga Ora – Homes and Communities and Ministry of Housing and Urban Development to try and achieve positive housing outcomes for the city, and this infrastructure investment will also involve a high level of collaboration with local agencies, landowners and developers.
If the applications for funding are successful, it is expected that the infrastructure upgrades will take place over the next five to six years.
Infrastructure Acceleration Fund
The Infrastructure Acceleration Fund (IAF) is a key component of the Government’s $3.8 billion Housing Acceleration Fund announced in March 2021. It is a contestable fund for investment in enabling infrastructure to support new housing supply throughout Aotearoa.
Infrastructure Acceleration Fund application areas:
- $61.55million funding sought
- Estimate of up to 1320 new dwellings
- Four major stormwater detention ponds with wetlands
- upgrades to stormwater pipe network
- $28.54million funding sought
- Estimate of up to 1765 new dwellings
- Direct water towards the east (away from Utuhina Stream) by upgrading Tilsley Street pump station
- upgrades to stormwater pipe network
- $23.76million funding sought
- Estimate of up to 2151 new dwellings
- Construction of three detention ponds with wetlands
- Additions to the stormwater network
- Realigned existing channels and culvert upgrades
- Council and partners have identified through the Homes and Thriving Communities Strategic Framework that Rotorua has a housing shortage of approximately 1500 – 1750 homes. This deficit is just want is required to meet the needs of the existing community.
- It is now projected that Rotorua will need 6000 new homes by 2030, of which 4260 will be needed by 2026. A significant number of these home will need to be public housing.
- Latest results (30 June 2021) show there are 24,475 applicants on the housing register in New Zealand. 741 of those people are in Rotorua (3%). View more info here
- In 2012, when the current operative District Plan was notified, the population in Rotorua was forecast to decline. However, since 2013 the population has increased by 8850 people (12.9%).
- Median house sales prices have increased by $320,000 (120%) to $585,000 since 2013. In the same time period, median rents increased $210 per week (84%) to $460 per week.
- 66% of household growth over the next 10 years will be in smaller household types such as single occupants or couples. There is a lack of smaller type housing typologies to suit these household make ups.
- There are currently 650 renting superannuitants receiving the Accommodation Supplement who are paying unaffordable rents (rent more than 30% of their income).
See the report to the Strategy, Policy & Finance Committee about Council’s IAF applications in the meeting agenda HERE – go to p24.
Read more about Council's work on the Rotorua Housing Taskforce HERE.
View the presentation slides relating to this matter HERE on Council’s website.
Today’s meeting was livestreamed and you can go directly to this portion of the meeting recording via THIS LINK (please note the video will be available once the confidential section of the meeting has concluded).