SAMs are areas in residential neighbourhoods that are distinctive from their surroundings and are considered to have a character worthy of retention.
The Special Amenity Areas of the City Plan (external link) have been reviewed through the District Plan Review process. The Independent Hearings Panel decision on the Stage 2 Residential provision includes incorporation of Character Area overlays in 15 Christchurch locations as well as in Lyttelton and Akaroa. The Character overlays within Christchurch City have associated rules controlling works visible from the street or within the front yard setback and also where they involve facade changes. Within the Lyttelton and Akaroa Character Area overlays external additions, alterations or demolition as well as the erection of new buildings and the relocation of buildings on to a site required resource consent. The Stage 2 Residential decision results in the Special Amenity Area rules of the City Plan being treated as inoperative pursuant to s86F of the Resource Management Act as these rules have been replaced by the Residential zone rules and in some locations, the Character Area overlays.
It is intended that guides to the Character Areas will be produced by the Council in due course.