Notes from the Port Hills Red Zone : Ideas Generation and Discussion evening

Thursday, September 27th, 2018

Bringing together residents with those agencies involved in the management and future use decision making of the Red Zone.  The aim of the meeting was to improve residents’ understanding of the decisions which need to be made prior to settlement of the land and allow for discussion around opportunities which exist during the time of transitional use.

With 60 Bays Area residents attending it showed support of the importance that future use decisions must be made with the community in mind.

Thursday, 20th September, 7pm-9pm, St Andrews Church, 148 Main Road, Redcliffs


Facilitated by:

Jocelyn Papprill,  Mt Pleasant Residents’ Association & Liza Sparrow, Sumner Hub

Invited Speakers:

Matt Bradley and Kirsten Forrest, Land Information New Zealand (LINZ)

Councillor Sara Templeton

Jane Gregg, Life in Vacant Spaces

Mike Sleigh and Charlot Hudson, Sumner Green & Skate



The meeting was very much about exploring opportunities.

In February 2017 about 20 Mt Pleasant residents heard from Chris Mene of Regenerate Christchurch about what that organisation’s role was but there was no clarity at that stage as to the constraints or which government agency a community needed to work through. At that meeting those present generated heaps of ideas but little progress was made afterwards due to that lack of clarity and the need for coordinated approach. Sumner has been progressing a couple of their projects and Heathcote community members have also been looking into possible projects with LINZ.

What we hoped to gain by the end of the evening was greater clarity as to which organisation manages what, what constraints any group must work within and the most effective way a group may organise to move ideas forward. The various community or residents’ association within the Bays Area are keen to act as umbrella organisations through which Red Zone volunteer groupings can work. LINZ’s preference is to work with or through established organisations for the term of a 3-5 year lease on the red zoned land, and that projects will be to the benefit of a wider community.

The key thing for all of us to remember is that any community project will be volunteer lead or facilitated. In order for a project to grow and blossom there needs to be a champion, or champions, who gather around them a team of volunteers who are also excited and inspired by the vision for the project. Projects need commitments of time, passion, energy, knowledge, skills …. and networks that may be called upon in time of need!


Matt Bradley and Kirsten Forrest, Land Information New Zealand

There are 600 properties zoned red throughout the Port Hills – they are split into 50 pockets of land.

LINZ are responsible for clearing built structures, completing interim land treatments and managing the residential red zone. Maintenance is completed monthly on grassed sites and every two months on planted sites.  It’s important to note that life risk remains high within many of these sites and geotechnical risks are managed by strict health and safety protocols.

 Future use decisions are outside LINZ’s mandate. However LINZ does administer the Transitional Land Use policy, which allows for transitional use of red zone land up to a 5 year period. LINZ consult and work collaboratively with Regenerate Christchurch and the Christchurch City Council on transitional use requests, seeking their view and support for each application.

If residents are interested in purchasing red zone land, LINZ have a register where their details can be retained and will be provided to the correct agency when any ownership or management transfer occurs.  

If you have a transitional land use request LINZ are happy to provide details on the process and assist where possible. Although conversations start with a ‘yes’ approach, there are a number of criteria to be met and restrictions for use.  The criteria is outlined on the website and in the information sheet on Transitional Land Use.

If you would like more information on the red zone or the transitional use process see below information.  


Where is the red zone?

o   click this symbol on the top task bar

o   In the search bar type “red zone” then search

o   Click “add” under the Red Zone option

o   Press the X on the right hand corner of the “add data” window

o   You can now zoom into an area or type an address at the top left corner

o   As you zoom in you will see the areas of Red Zone shaded in Red and the closer you zoom, you can see street numbers

Transitional Land Use

  1.       The application form can be found here
  2.      Any questions or applications for Transitional Land Use are to be submitted directly to and we will manage these as they come through to LINZ


Future Use

  1.       As mentioned, LINZ are only the interim managers of the land until ownership transfers/future decisions are made
  2.      LINZ do however administer a register where anyone can record their interest for the future purchase of Red Zone properties. Those wishing to do this can forward their details to where their information will be added and in the future they will be contacted by those responsible for the future decisions of the land.


Contact Matthew Bradley:

Contact Kirsten Forrest:

For more information:

Councillor Sara Templeton

In August 2017 as part of a discussions arising from the 2103 Cost Share Agreement (CSA) the Crown and Council reached an agreement in principle regarding the transfer of a number of Port Hills and Brooklands Red zone properties from the Crown to the Council. This included 598 properties in the Port Hills. At that point the transfer of all properties was expected to occur on 1 July 2018

After the change in Government in late 2017 the transfer was put on hold at the request of the new Government while it took stock of the Christchurch situation, including its intention to put in place the Capital Acceleration Facility, and a Global Settlement.

In the interim, a team of Council staff has worked with LINZ to receive as much information as possible about a small number of properties within the 70 that could be potentially put back on the market, if they are transferred to Council, and also to better understand the ongoing operating costs which would fall to Council. (All in anticipation that the Crown and Council will subsequently agree to a transfer – and in order to understand the commitments and requirements in more detail, if that transfer is to occur).

In advance of any general transfer of all titles Council staff have been discussing transferring the titles associated with the Sumner Skate Park ahead of any others as a priority. These discussions with LINZ have been positive to date, and Council staff hope to update the Community Board soon on this.

CCC own some “mass movement” sites, in addition to the LINZ red zone land. Information can be found here:

Contact Councillor Sara Templeton:

Jane Gregg, Life in Vacant Spaces (LiVS)

LiVS are dedicated to inspiring Christchurch to activate vacant sites and spaces with creative, intriguing and entrepreneurial temporary projects.  LiVS have a facilitating and enabling role in the transitional space and have been behind the scenes of most of the projects tested on empty sites around the city, and more recently, buildings which are waiting to be tenanted.   The goal of bringing people back into the centre of Christchurch by way of transitional projects such as community gardens, art installations, and the Cultivate urban farm (which now employs youth).

LiVS can help with you with your project ideas by site brokerage and negotiating deals with land owners, finding funding and incentive grants for land owners, using their legal frameworks to hold and absorb risk for land owners (including government and council owned land) and project partners and making sure everyone is working legally, safely and in a way that optimises outcomes for the city and our communities.

There is a time and a place for transitional projects and the red zone is one of them.  An example outlined by Jane was in the Residential Red Zone (RRZ) in the city’s east. In 2017-2018 LiVS worked with LINZ to identify an 8 hectare site to test possible transitional activities in this part of the city. The site is called East x East (corner Broker Ave and New Brighton Rd). Early on in the process, LiVS identified some issues with how the community had been engaged in this work and sought to re-focus the project to being inclusive of community aspirations. While the local community were located at a distance from the site, there was a need for deeper and more substantial community engagement and to identify what the closest locals wanted to see on the site. A plan was developed with goals and priorities, and the first project saw LiVS working alongside the residents association to facilitate installation of a high quality, temporary pump track. Events such as the Red Zone 6 have also been tested on this site, as well as a number of ongoing community-led projects. Currently LiVS is working to support a wider group of eastern residents associations who are working together on even higher impact concepts for other parts of the RRZ. Working with community allowed for the project to become a huge success.

Find out more:

Contact Jane Gregg:


Mike Sleigh and Charlot Hudson, Sumner Green and Skate

The Sumner Green and Skate Group was set up when it became evident that the much used and loved transitional village green project (corner of Nayland St and Wakefield Avenue, Sumner) was about to be replaced by Matuku Takotako : Sumner Centre.  This meeting space housed a skate ramp, garden, petanque court and tables/seating. The loss of this site meant the loss of a vibrant centre to Sumner village. Alternative sites were mooted and after months of navigating council, LINZ and working with the Linwood Central Heathcote Community Board a group of passionate locals were able to prevent the land near the site of the old Marine Tavern on Nayland St from being sold for commercial or residential use.  This land is currently earmarked for community use – namely a village green and skate facility.

Attached is a step by step account of that process and ideas of how your group could have similar success.  Sumner Green & Skate are more than happy to be a point of contact for groups seeking guidance at the grassroots level.

For more information:

Contact Charlot Hudson:


Q&A session followed each speaker

Questions were mainly those that sought clarification of points. Concern was raised that those residents surrounding or next to parcels of red zoned land must be consulted first before any decisions about transitional use be made.

Separate sessions

After the speakers the gathering split into 4 separate suburb groupings with discussions about specific sites occurring. Tea, coffee & biscuits were made available.

Mt Pleasant

Many of the smaller pockets of red zoned land, such as near the bottom of Maffeys Rd and around Quarry Rd, have already been planted up and fenced by LINZ. These pockets are not available for transitional or future use.

Much of the discussion centred round two larger areas of land, namely in Aratoro Place & the top of McCormacks Bay Rd.

A sizeable group of residents from Aratoro Place attended and were therefore able to begin a useful and amiable discussion as to what they may like to see happen as a transitional project. Initial ideas on the night included plantings to encourage the birds, picnic tables, seating, moving the fence back. Residents are keen to retain the tranquility of the site  (and their street), for any project to be simple and not cluttered. Some mentioned being keen to trap to ensure pests do not disturb the bird life returning. They have decided to continue the discussion at a later date and have taken the necessary paperwork so they know the steps to follow should they wish to apply to LINZ.

There was also some ideas put forward for the use of the small section, 22 McCormacks Bay Rd but it is rather hidden from view as it is behind an occupied residential property.

The land opposite the sports field in the in the top part of McCormacks Bay was seen by another group as a potential site for a community garden (fruit trees, berry garden, herbs) as sheltered & warm. Keen for such a garden to be easy care & using the no dig establishment process. A smaller groups of residents from the wider Mt Pleasant area will continue that conversation at a date before Christmas.

Jocelyn Papprill from the Mt Pleasant Residents’ Association committee will keep in contact with both groups to ascertain progress on ideas and help with LINZ application process.

Contact Jocelyn:


If you have any questions about discussions or plans in Sumner, Redcliffs or Heathcote, please contact your local residents’ association


Liza Sparrow  


Christine Toner


Jackie Foulkes

< Back to News