In this section

Photo of a church

As Selwyn continues to grow, its communities are becoming more urban-based. It’s expected that by 2031, up to 80% of the district’s population will live in urban settings. It will be important to ensure that the amenity values, character and identity of each township are maintained and enhanced.

Every township and settlement has its own distinctive character, which is derived from a range of different factors. For many Selwyn townships their setting within the rural environment contributes significantly to their character and identity.

Cultural and heritage values, including those of Te Taumutu Runanga, play an important role in recognising the past, promoting community identity and bringing uniqueness and desirability to an area.

Arts and recreation are also important for community wellbeing. The district has many open space areas for recreation, which include sports facilities, neighbourhood reserves, public gardens, nature reserves and outdoor adventure areas. There are also community facilities such as halls and pools that provide for recreation.

Another key issue is housing. Many residents identify larger sections and spaciousness as an important part of township character. As the region grows, however, there may be a need to provide choice in living environments and housing types to cater for different lifestyles, age groups and cultures. Medium-density housing provides an alternative to traditional large sections and can offer advantages including affordability and efficient land use, while helping to support local business and promote public transport.

Some guiding principles

  • The special features or characteristics of individual townships are identified and enhanced
  • Cultural and historic features are actively preserved and enhanced
  • Views to important natural features and landscapes are identified and retained
  • A range of housing types are provided to meet the needs of the whole community – including old and young people, people of all incomes, ethnicities and family types

What do you think?

  • What do you like about your township and the wider area? What would you change and why?
  • What features or characteristics help to define your township:
  • wide tree-lined streets?
  • views to the countryside or special landscape features?
  • the quiet rural ‘feel’ of the community?
  • other things?
  • If your township grows, which of these features would you want to retain or protect? Why is this important?
  • How important to you is it to protect the productive capacity and rural outlook of rural land around your township?
  • What types of housing do you want in your town?
  • What size sections for housing would you like in your township if it was to grow and develop:
  • small sections for townhouses?
  • medium sized sections for normal 3-4 bedroom houses?
  • larger sections for bigger houses and gardens?
  • lifestyle-sized sections
  • others?
  • Will changes to the population, such as an aging population or newcomers, mean that different housing is needed in the future? What type of housing is needed and where should it go?