New residential and commercial developments place additional demand on the city's community infrastructure such as the transport network, water supply and parks.

A development contribution is a charge on new developments that place additional demand on capacity in the Council's facilities and infrastructure.

Development contributions of cash or sometimes land help fund the facilities and infrastructure that the Council provides to cater for growth. 

Using development contributions to fund a fair share of the costs of providing additional facilities and infrastructure to cater for growth means the full cost is not borne by current ratepayers. It also means the Council can plan for and provide the right infrastructure at the right time to support the city's growth. 

What development contributions help fund

Christchurch City Council uses development contributions to help pay for infrastructure assets that provide growth capacity for the following activities.


  • Regional parks
  • Garden and heritage parks
  • Sports parks
  • Neighbourhood parks. 

Network infrastructure

  • Water supply 
  • Wastewater collection
  • Wastewater treatment and disposal
  • Stormwater and flood protection
  • Road network
  • Active travel
  • Public transport infrastructure.

Assessing for development contributions

Development contributions can only be used to fund the growth-related cost of a capital project and not for improved levels of service, or maintenance and renewal costs.

The amount of contribution required depends on the property location and how many household unit equivalents (HUEs) of demand the development will add to infrastructure and facilities. One HUE equals the requirements for a typical residential home.

Contributions are also levied on commercial developments that place  additional demand on council infrastructure and facilities. Calculating the demand for commercial developments is more complex, and takes into account floor area, the type of business and location. These developments are assessed on a case-by-case.

In the case of a commercial subdivision, the Council will assess the development contribution requirement as being one household unit equivalent per additional lot at the time of subdivision. When a subsequent application for resource consent or building consent is made to further develop the site a full assessment will be made based on the nature of the development. It is likely further development contributions will be required at this time to reflect the eventual demand on infrastructure.


The cost of providing facilities and infrastructure to cater for growth can vary for different areas of the city. To reflect this, development contributions for some activities are assessed based on the catchment or area of the city where the development is located.

The Council currently uses catchments to assess development contributions required for neighbourhood parks, stormwater and flood protection, and the road network.

Development contribution rebates

The Council has four development contribution rebate schemes. These apply to:

  • Residential development in the Christchurch Central City area – within the four avenues
  • Non-residential (business) development in the Central City Business Zone
  • Residential development of stand-alone residential units with a floor area less than 60m2
  • Social housing development.

Your development may be eligible for a rebate(external link) if it meets the criteria.