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Progress Continues On Bringing Hastings City Centre Alive

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The vision to make Hastings’ city centre a vibrant place to live, work and play came a step closer yesterday with a proposal to make it easier for people to convert inner city buildings for residential use. In its 2018-2028 Long Term Plan the Hastings District Council laid out its plans to invest in the city centre to increase its vibrancy through encouraging business activity and inner city living. Currently the Hastings CBD is zoned central character and in some cases resource consents are required if people are looking to live in buildings above the ground floor. This was due to rules in the proposed District Plan that could require people to install outdoor living space and on-site car parking if they wanted to convert a commercial building to residential use. In order to remove this barrier and make it easier to create residential spaces, the council’s strategy planning and partnership committee yesterday recommended a variation to the proposed District Plan to remove these restrictive rules in the central character precinct and other identified historic areas. This variation would then be publicly notified and opened to public submissions. Hastings District Council strategy planning and partnership committee member Damon Harvey, who was also deputy chair of the community development committee, said this was another important step to enabling people to live in the CBD. “Hastings District Council has made a significant commitment to the revitalisation of the CBD, to make it a great place to work, play and live. Great progress is being made already and we look forward to working with property owners to support them in converting unused space into apartment style living.” Hastings mayor Sandra Hazlehurst said this was just the start to achieving the council’s vision for a people-focussed city centre. “We want to support people to take advantage of our wonderful buildings that could make great apartments, just as we have seen happening in other cities. We are also looking at other initiatives to encourage our landlords to redevelop their buildings into more inner city living. “Our community has told us that they want a strong, vibrant, compact and resilient city centre and this is one of the ways we can help make Hastings a great place to live, socialise and do business.” Posted: 13  August 2018