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  5. 4-General Rules
  6. 5-Natural Environment
  7. 6-Natural Features & Landscapes
  8. 7-Heritage
  9. 8-Natural Hazards
  10. 9-Hazardous Substances & Contaminated Land
  11. 10-Network Utilities & Designations
  12. 11-Financial Contributions
  13. 12-Subdivision Services & Infrastructure
    1. 12A-Purpose: Subdivision
    2. 12B-Subdivision in Residential Zones
    3. 12C-Subdivision in the Rural Residential Zone
    4. 12D-Subdivision in the Rural Zones
    5. 12E-Subdivision in Commercial & Industrial Zones
    6. 12F-Subdivision: Marae, Papakainga & Matapihi
    7. 12G-Purpose: Service & Infrastructure
  14. 13-Open Space
  15. 14-Residential Zones
  16. 15-Rural Residential Zone
  17. 16-Rural Zones
  18. 17-Commercial Zones
  19. 18-Industrial Zones
  20. 19-Education Centre Zones
  21. 20-Special Use Zone-Baypark
  22. Part B Maps
Tauranga City Plan

Definitions - S

Updated 2 December 2017


Land and/or buildings used to provide regular instruction or training of children including pre-schools, childcare facilities, primary, intermediate and secondary schools, work skills training centres, outdoor education centres and sport training establishments, and their ancillary administrative, cultural, health, recreational or communal facilities. This term excludes tertiary education premises and home based childcare.

secondary independent dwelling unit

An independent dwelling unit secondary to the principal independent dwelling unit on the same site and held under the same title.

secondary street frontage

Means the street frontage of a site that is not the primary street frontage.

sensitive area

Means an area identified between 0 metres and 10 metres above the permitted height of the zone within an identified viewshaft protection area as identified on the Plan Maps (Part B). 

sensitive zone

All Residential zones, Open Space Zones, Rural Marae Community zone, Rural Residential zone, Education Centre Zones. 

service area

Means an area set aside for the exclusive use of a dwelling unit for the purpose of providing domestic storage.

service connection

Has the same meaning as in section 197 of the Local Government Act 2002 which means: a physical connection to a service provided by, or on behalf of, a territorial authority.

service station

Any premises used for the sale of motor fuels and lubricants by retail and includes:

Mechanical workshops and servicing;

  1. Ancillary retail sale of goods and food;
  2. Vehicle washes;
  3. The hire of vehicles and trailers;
  4. The storage and retailing of LPG and CNG.


The minimum level of on-site service required in a zone to accommodate the transport, stormwater, water and wastewater demands of land use activities in a manner that is both consistent with the purpose of the underlying zone and the anticipated demand or capacity of local and City-wide infrastructure


That distance from a building, structure or activity to the boundary of the site on which that building, structure or activity occurs. The distance of the setback is determined by rules in the relevant zone, and includes:

  1. Front setback - that part of a site on any lot that has direct frontage to a road, being a line extending across the full width of the site parallel to the boundary adjoining the road, notwithstanding the presence of any segregation strip;
  2. Rear setback - that part of a site on any lot other than a corner site, being a line extending across the full width of the site parallel to the legal boundary furthest from the road frontage of, or access to the site;
  3. Side setback - a line extending across the full width of the site parallel to the legal boundary not fronting a road or defined as a rear boundary;
  4. In respect of a corner site every setback not fronting on to a road frontage shall be deemed to be a side setback;
  5. In respect of rear sites all setbacks except that deemed to be the rear setback shall be side setbacks


shall remain vacant

That the area shall not be developed, landscaped or otherwise contoured, or planted in trees in such a way that would prevent the relocation of the subject building or structure. The provision of setbacks, on-site carparking, access and manoeuvring areas in accordance with the rules for the Suburban Residential Zone in the Plan are allowed. Construction of buildings or structures that require building consent prior to the relocation of the subject buildings will not be allowed. For guidance the construction, erection and placement of minor structures and works on private property, as well as buildings designed and constructed to be able to be removed so that relocation of the subject building can be physically undertaken within 10 working days, may be appropriate on the alternative building site

shared accommodation

A building incorporating a number of bedrooms utilising a shared kitchen and intended to be used as a residence for a group of people unrelated to each other and acting independently of each other in their day-to-day activities. A kitchen shall, as a minimum, provide for the preparation, cooking and refrigerated storage of food. The definition of shared accommodation shall not apply to households of 6 or fewer inhabitants. Such households shall be deemed to occupy an independent dwelling unit.


Means a building, or part of a building, constructed as an independent dwelling unit, that is displayed and promoted to encourage people to buy or construct similar residential buildings at a different site, and may be sold to remain on the same site as an independent dwelling unit


Any display or device whether or not placed on land or affixed to a building, stationary vehicle or structure, intended to attract attention for the purposes of directing, identifying, informing, or advertising, and which is visible from a public place.

For the purposes of the Plan the area of a sign shall be a measurement of that sign’s face or total message visible from a public place.

significant archaeological area

An area of land identified as having a high degree of archaeological value as identified in Appendix 7D: Register of Significant Archaeological Areas or Appendix 7E: Te Tumu Archaeological Management Areas

significant groups of trees

Means a group of trees listed in Appendix 6F: Significant Groups of Trees Register which forms part of the landscape character of an area of the City and consists of the following:

  1. At least one notable tree listed in Appendix 6E: Notable Trees Register; and
  2. Trees that are physically close to each other or which form a collective or functional unity through meeting at least one of the following criteria:
    1. Canopies are touching; or
    2. Canopies are overlapping; or
    3. Canopies are not further than 5 metres apart; and
  3. Trees that are either:
    1. At least 15 metres high;
    2. Have single trunk diameter (measured at 1.4 metres above ground level) of 300mm or more; or
    3. Have an aggregate trunk diameter of 300mm or more (measured at 1.4 metres above ground level) measured from a total of up to three trunks;

but excludes any plant pest species identified by the Bay of Plenty Regional Council and Phoenix palms less than 10 metres in height

significant maori area (SMA)

An area of land identified as having a high degree of cultural and traditional significance to Tangata Whenua and Iwi as identified in Appendix 7B: Register of Significant Maori Areas


An area of land which complies with the provisions of the Plan as regards the minimum frontage, area, and configuration and which (being all the land comprised in one Certificate of Title) may be disposed of separately, but excludes:

  1. A parcel of land which has been or may be disposed of separately for the purposes of a public reserve or public work or which may be disposed of to an adjoining owner subject to a condition imposed by section 220(2) of the Resource Management Act 1991 (requiring the issue of one Certificate of Title for more than one allotment);
  2. An allotment comprising a building or part of a building shown or identified separately on a survey plan for the purposes of the issue of a cross-lease or company lease, or a principal unit or accessory unit on a unit plan. 

site coverage

Means that portion of a site area which may be covered by buildings or parts of a building that are enclosed by the face of any exterior wall of the building, including exterior walls above ground floor level, but excludes:

  1. open decks and or balconies which may be covered for sun protection;
  2. open carports;
  3. any part of the eaves (including guttering);
  4. pergolas;
  5. structures below ground level

site layout

Means the arrangement of buildings, structures and landscape elements on a site and includes patterns of vehicle and pedestrian access.

small and community-scale distributed renewable energy generation

Renewable electricity generation projects with an installed electricity generation capacity of less than four megawatts and excludes offshore wind, tidal and wave generation. It does not include the transmission electric lines required to link the energy facility to the electricity network.

speedway activities and events

Spectator facilities and services and associated management and administration. 

speedway racing

The racing of motor vehicles on an oval shaped dirt track, including pit activities and ancillary activities

standard tree evaluation method (STEM)

The method used to evaluate notable trees or heritage trees using a set of descriptive feature headings set against a scale of merit points given for the quality of those features. 

stormwater overland flowpath

The natural or artificially earthworked route taken by stormwater which becomes concentrated as it flows overland, making its way downhill following the path of least resistance towards the stormwater network, rivers, streams harbour or coast. Stormwater overland flowpaths include secondary flow paths which result when the piped stormwater system gets blocked or when the capacity is exceeded. For the purposes of this definition, a stormwater overland flowpath includes an artificially designed route utilising formed or hard surfaces.

stormwater reserve

Land associated with or used for the purpose of the treatment, storage, conveyance, or discharge of stormwater. Stormwater reserves may contain detention or retention ponds, natural or manmade watercourses, stormwater overland flowpaths, culverts, pipelines and associated structures

stormwater run-off

Means that portion of rainfall which flows directly from land or any impermeable surface into a natural waterbody or built disposal systems (eg, drains, channels or designated ponding areas). 

strategic road network

That part of the transport network that includes motorways, expressways, primary arterials and secondary arterials.


The visual appearance of a street and its surrounds, and includes geometry of street pattern and subdivision, width and length of streets, degree of enclosure, building setbacks from the street, fencing and street design, and the contribution that vegetation makes to the appearance of the street. 


Any building, equipment, device or other human-made facility which is fixed to the land. 


Has the same meaning as contained within Section 218 of the Resource Management Act 1991 (RMA) which means: 
  1. The division of an allotment:
    1. By an application to a District Land Registrar for the issue of a separate certificate of title for any part of the allotment; or
    2. By the disposition by way of sale or offer for sale of the fee simple to part of the allotment; or
    3. By a lease of part of the allotment which, including renewals, is or could be for a term of more than 35 years; or
    4. By the grant of a company lease or cross lease in respect of any part of the allotment; or
    5. By the deposit of a unit plan, or an application to a District Land Registrar for the issue of a separate certificate of title for any part of a unit on a unit plan; or
  2. An application to a District Land Registrar for the issue of a separate certificate of title in circumstances where the issue of that certificate of title is prohibited by section 226;

and the term subdivide land has a corresponding meaning.


Means the area covered by the Council and the Western Bay of Plenty District Council.


Has the same meaning as in the Electricity Regulations 1997 which means:
Those parts of works or electrical installations, being a building, structure, or enclosure, incorporating fittings that are used principally for the purposes of the control of the distribution of electricity. 

surf life saving buildings (including clubrooms)

Means the use of land and buildings which are used for the primary purpose of surf life saving and includes storage, changing rooms, lookout tower, office room, first aid room, clubroom and includes ancillary fundraising activities and community use other than for individual financial reward or profit.  

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