A report released today by the Wellington Mayoral Forum shows that growth is set to continue in Upper Hutt, with continued housing and business demand for the foreseeable future.
The Wellington Housing and Business Capacity Assessment (HBA) has been completed regionally across major urban areas, in conjunction with Hutt City, Wellington City, Porirua City, and Kapiti Coast Councils. The assessment evaluates housing and business demand over a 30-year period. This is compared against land that is currently available or identified as a future growth area, in order to test whether each city can meet projected demand.
The HBA shows that up to just over 5,600 dwellings should be anticipated in urban Upper Hutt by 2047. Employment and business growth is expected to continue—a reflection of the growing economy, which is anticipated to reach $1 billion by 2035.
The availability of convenient industrial land that is resilient to natural hazards means increased industrial business demand for Upper Hutt is likely in the short term. Upper Hutt’s proximity to Wellington City, home to many national corporate and central government offices, means the city is likely to also see greater demand for commercial land over the 30-year period. Upper Hutt is expected to have ample land and floor space available to accommodate the expected growth in businesses.
The report estimates that Upper Hutt is currently able to provide for about 3,500 homes (700 within existing urban areas and just over 2,800 in greenfield sites, including those identified in the Upper Hutt Land Use Strategy). This means that without change to existing policies that control development, the city could be faced with a shortfall of up to 2,100 homes by 2047.
“Upper Hutt City Council is responding to these results through a comprehensive review of its residential and rural zones in Upper Hutt,” says Mayor Wayne Guppy. “We’re reviewing our District Plan controls to enable growth that meets the future needs of our community, balanced with retaining the qualities of our environment that make Upper Hutt so special.”
Council’s Director of Planning and Regulatory Services, Richard Harbord says the results highlight the priority of Plan Change 50, which is now underway. “To meet the forecast shortfall, Upper Hutt will need to consider developing at higher densities than it has done in the past. Council will continue to actively support the construction of additional housing in light of the HBA report, while the District Plan is being updated.”
The HBA report is available online