Partnership Approvals are a catch-all service for developers

Posted: 31 January 2017

Construction workers meeting on-site
Construction projects rely on a wide range of approvals from local authorities. Access to an efficient service that encourages strong working relationships can substantially contribute to a development’s success.

Councils throughout the country have shown significant interest in the Partnership Approvals service run by Christchurch City Council. This provides a single point of contact throughout the life of a project, from concept to completion, and has changed the way the council works with its development customers.

There are a variety of associated checks and approvals, both within and alongside resource consent and building consent approvals. These include:

  • road corridor access
  • water supply
  • wastewater removal
  • stormwater
  • environmental health 
  • transport. 

The Partnership Approvals service identifies the requirements at each stage. It helps avoid surprises and delays in construction planning, as well as offering certainty around construction start times. This reduces costs caused by delays and means occupants can move into buildings as planned.

Partnership Approvals can be applied to large-scale projects, including those with critical timeframes and technical challenges. Customers can also have multiple projects managed as portfolios of work. In addition, a basic comparison between projects that do and don’t use Partnership Approvals shows that it saves one third of the total elapsed building consent processing time.

How it works

Currently the Christchurch City Council has a dedicated team of six staff managing more than 200 projects through Partnership Approvals. The service is adaptable but follows a basic structure, which is managed in an online platform with full client and staff visibility:

  • Early engagement – concept planning stage, a case manager is assigned.
  • Project discovery – identify all regulatory approvals, common causes of delays shared.
  • Pre-application consultation – meetings, emails and phone discussions between client and council technical staff.
  • Application management – monitor activity as consents, licences and other approvals are processed. Support for council staff to obtain the information they need to give approvals.
  • Construction – manage changes and stages, monitor activity and ensure documentation is ready for final processes.
  • Completion – facilitate Certificates for Public Use, Code Compliance Certificates and other licences required for occupation of buildings (such as health and alcohol).

For further information contact Aaron Haymes at Christchurch City Council (03 941 8999 or

This information is published by the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment’s Chief Executive. It is a general guide only and, if used, does not relieve any person of the obligation to consider any matter to which the information relates according to the circumstances of the particular case. Expert advice may be required in specific circumstances. Where this information relates to assisting people: