What is MDH?



Regional rules & guides



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The following local authorities in this region have rules or guidance relating to medium-density housing: Ashburton District, Christchurch City, Selwyn District, Timaru District and Waitaki District.

Ashburton District 

Ashburton district plan – residential

This document defines the residential zones in Ashburton District including MDH and identifies site standards such as density, coverage, height, recession lines, setbacks and outdoor living.

Christchurch City

Christchurch district plan – MDH

This document is a summary of the relevant rules for construction of one or more residential units on the majority of sites within the Residential Medium Density Zone. It covers built form standards such as density, planting, height, coverage, living space, recession planes, setbacks, fences, overhangs and minimum size.

Christchurch MDH design guide

This guide provides urban design guidance for new residential development located in Living 3 zones under the Christchurch City Plan to facilitate the design of high-quality, medium density residential development that responds to the local context, is attractive, delivers a high level of amenity and meets the needs of its residents. 

Selwyn District 

Selwyn District Plan – Growth of townships – residential density

This part of the plan looks at the need for a range of section sizes and living environments in Selwyn District, while maintaining the spacious character and amenity values of townships.

Proposed Selwyn District Plan

The proposed Selwyn District Plan includes areas of medium-density housing in Lincoln, Prebbleton and Rolleston. The plan includes pedestrian and cycling connections between MDH and amenities such as shops and schools. The plan also encourages MDH immediately adjacent to neighbourhood parks to compensate for reduced outdoor living space within MDH developments.

Selwyn MDH design guide

This resource provides design guidelines for MDH in Selwyn including density, building envelope, section shape and size, layout and design principles.

Timaru District

Timaru draft district plan

Timaru’s new draft district plan identifies a Medium Density Residential Zone and encourages innovative approaches to MDH developments. The online draft plan includes an interactive map showing the specific areas covered by the Medium Density Residential Zone.

Waitaki District

Waitaki District Council residential rules

The Residential 1 Zone covers a small area of land located between Oamaru and Weston principally for medium density.