Premises affected by building work cannot be used by members of the public until the code compliance certificate is issued unless a certificate for public use has been issued.

If the public are to have access to all or parts of the building affected by building before the code compliance certificate is issued, you must have a certificate for public use. A person who owns, occupies or controls premises intended for public use may apply for a certificate for public use.

To be able to issue a certificate for public use Council must be satisfied on reasonable grounds that members of the public can use the premises safely.

The Council will undertake an assessment of a certificate for public use application to establish if the premises can be safely used by the public while affected by building work.

The assessment may include but not limited to the following:

  • Adequate restrictions to areas affected by building work, either by the use of barriers and security or including conditions that building work is taking place outside times when the premises are being occupied by members of the public.
  • Adequate barriers protecting changes of level within the premises being used.
  • Adequate operation of specified systems. This may include temporary modifications to some of the specified systems.
  • How the means of escape from a fire is adequately maintained. This may include added signage for route changes and the possible need for an updated evacuation plan.
  • How structural integrity is being adequately maintained. This may include temporary propping or bracing.
  • How fire and smoke separations are adequately maintained. This may include temporary measures to compensate for compromises created by the building work.
  • Adequate amenity within the premises. This may include sealing-off occupied areas from construction noise and dust and maintaining adequate ventilation. It may also include the provision of temporary sanitary facilities to ensure there is a sufficient number for the occupants.

Often the use of premises is staged where one part of the premises is opened up for public use, while construction work progresses and further parts of the premises become ready to be occupied.

This would require a further certificate for public use application to include these areas.

Other changes to circumstances to how the premises are affected by building work may require an amended certificate for public use application depending on the extent of the change.

You may wish to disclose this information in your initial application.

To apply, complete an  application for a certificate for public use [PDF, 98 KB] (Form 15 B-013) also available in Word [DOCX, 391 KB], then submit the application form, with supporting documents and the application fee.

An application can be submitted via the following methods:

Online: visit Online Services(external link). You will need to register to use Online Services. 

Email: via CPUApplications@ccc.govt.nz.

Post: post your application to us at Consenting & Compliance Group, PO Box 73013, Christchurch 8154 (additional costs apply).

Drop off: deliver to Council office, 53 Hereford Street, Christchurch or any Council service desk (additional costs apply). 

A completed application form shall be accompanied by:

  • Evidence of the applicant’s status.
  • Plans and diagrams of the premises, which should include details and location of any barriers to restrict access to areas affected by building work.
  • Documentation relevant to the safety of the premises such as engineer’s report and certificates related to specified systems. 
  • Information on the status of all specified systems within the building including any temporary modifications to specified systems. 

Altogether the application must demonstrate how members of the public can use the premises safely.

Statutory clock

The Council has to decide whether to issue the certificate within 20 working days after an application has been received.

Request for information and the statutory clock

During processing of your application, the clock stops if we have to ask you for further information. Please respond quickly with the requested information.

Inspection

The assessment will include an inspection of the premises by a Council building inspector to ensure all safety measures are in place. This will be arranged between the applicant and a Council building inspection officer.

Issuing a certificate for public use

The Council will issue a certificate for public use (Form 16) only if it is satisfied that members of the public can use the premises safely.

The expiry date of a certificate for public use is at the Council's discretion.

Certificates for public use do not relieve you, as the owner of a building, from the obligation to apply for a code compliance certificate, after all the building work has been carried out.

Refer to the Building Consents Fee Schedule for further information.

Please note that where the cost to process a certificate for public use exceeds the scheduled fee then additional time will be charged at the relevant officer charge out rate.