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Last modified: 29 Jul 2020 10:28am

Two men in hi-viz jackets talk inside a half-built building, one pointing

The Council is continuing to receive record numbers of building consent applications, and demand for onsite inspections since lockdown.

The Council was receiving an average of around 220 new building consents a month prior to the COVID-19 Level 4 lockdown. This has rapidly increased with the Council receiving 258 applications in May and well on track to reach that number again in June.

The consent team has also gone from carrying out 1400 building inspections a month, or around 70 a day, to over almost 1600 inspections in May, or around 80 a day. And it’s been getting busier in June, with the numbers looking like they could top 1800 inspections by the end of the month, Council Building Manager Vanessa Mitchell says.

Over 60% of all applications have been for new buildings, she says.

The consent team continued to receive and process consents through all alert levels with digital and some on-site inspections able to take place for the start of Level 3.

The team had cleared all its consents from the lockdown and had been supported by staff from Napier City Council who have been helping process applications, but the level of demand means some consent processing times may be slower than usual, Mrs Mitchell says.

“We’ve been able at this stage to keep to our commitment of a 48 hour turnaround from booking to us carrying out inspections. We’re doing our best to keep up, but people may see some slippage in the timeframes.

“This workload also places our planning team under pressure to assess district plan compliance and respond to your enquiries as people contemplate new business ventures and activities.”