Project planning

Pre-application meeting

We provide a service whereby you can talk to a building officer about your project before you start on your building consent application. If you have a difficult site, are building a large complicated structure or a staged development such as a commercial / retail development, it can be beneficial to meet with a council officer to talk through the issues before you start. 

To speak to a Building Officer please contact us on 0800 920 029 and our customer service team will arrange a call back.

Concept development meeting

If your project is complex and likely to involve multiple Council departments e.g. Building Control, Resource Consents, or Infrastructure, we recommend that you request a concept development meeting. At this meeting we can advise you what other consents or approvals you may need in addition to a building consent, such as a resource consent or approval from Fire and Emergency New Zealand, and what other things you will need to consider. We recommend you bring as much information about your project as you can. It may also help to bring experts assisting you with your project. The first half hour of this meeting is free. You must book ahead by calling us on 0800 920 029.

Vetting meeting

Once you have gathered all the required information and completed an application form for a building consent, you can book an appointment with our duty building officer to go through your application to ensure it is complete. We recommend you take this step because we will not accept an incomplete building consent application. This meeting is your opportunity to identify any gaps or inaccuracies in your application.

Book ahead by calling us on 0800 920 029 and then email your draft application to with "vetting [property address]" in the email subject header so we can refer to it at the meeting. The first half hour of this meeting is free.

Project information memorandum (PIM)

A project information memorandum (PIM) is not compulsory, but we strongly recommend you apply for one. It is a council-prepared report containing information on special land features and regulatory requirements likely to impact on your project. The PIM will tell you if you need approvals under other legislation such as:

  • Resource Management Act 
  • Fire Evacuation scheme
  • Heritage New Zealand approval. 

The PIM will also tell you about service connections and provide information about the land on which you want to build. It will give designers the information they need to comply with Council requirements and to produce accurate drawings. Having a PIM can save time and unexpected obstacles during the building consent process.

Building projects that will benefit from a PIM

Examples of building projects that may benefit from an early PIM application include:

  • a new house
  • additions to a house that involve changing the footprint or adding another storey
  • a new commercial building
  • significant external additions/alterations to a commercial building
  • external or internal additions/alterations to historic buildings
  • building projects of a large scale carried out in stages (e.g.: hospitals, shopping malls, schools etc)
  • building over two or more allotments (subdividing an allotment/building)
  • building across network utility operator’s assets or public stormwater or sewer systems
  • buildings on land subject to one or more natural hazards