Lauren Semple leads our resource management team and has more than 30 years’ experience in all aspects of consenting large scale development projects using a range of processes including traditional consenting under the Resource Management Act, direct referral, special legislation (Canterbury Earthquake Recovery Act 2011 and the Greater Christchurch Regeneration Act 2016) and more recently applications under the COVID-19 Recovery (Fast Track Consenting) Act 2020.
Lauren has successfully consented a significant number of large scale residential developments, the Dunedin Stadium, the temporary Christchurch stadium, the new Hagley Building at Christchurch Hospital and the Christchurch Justice and Emergency Precinct. She is currently leading the consenting of the new Dunedin Hospital, and providing legal advice on the Lake Onlsow hydro battery project among other development projects. Lauren has also been advising various infrastructure agencies in relation to the reform of the Resource Management Act 1991 and is a member of the Infrastructure Commission Steering Group looking at the new National Planning Framework.
Lauren combines her legal knowledge with an in-depth understanding of the development sector, offering pragmatic and highly effective strategies to accelerate the consenting of major projects.
This purpose built precinct will bring Christchurch’s justice and emergency services together on one site in central Christchurch. It is the largest multi-agency government co-location project in New Zealand’s history.
Greenwood Roche advised the Ministry of Justice regarding the resource management aspects of the Christchurch Justice and Emergency Precinct. This project is one of a number of anchor projects we are involved in.
Over the coming years, the Burwood Health Campus and Christchurch Hospital will undergo a $650 million re-development, the largest investment in public health facilities in New Zealand.
Greenwood Roche has successfully assisted the Ministry of Health in obtaining consent for the Burwood hospital redevelopment and a designation for the new Acute Services Building at Christchurch Hospital. The designation has been progressed utilising the provisions of the Canterbury Earthquake Recovery Act and has required a very thorough and careful assessment of the tests within that Act.
The hospital project is the third significant development project within Christchurch City that Greenwood Roche has successfully accelerated via the provisions of the Recovery Act.
The AMI Stadium has a 25,000 person capacity and was identified by the Government as a critical project to enable national and international sporting events to be held in Christchurch while the construction of a new permanent stadium was undertaken.
Lauren Semple was part of the project team assembled by the Ministry of Economic Development (now MBIE) to facilitate the construction of the temporary stadium. The Government announced an ambitious timeframe for completion of the project and Lauren’s role was to obtain all required consents for the stadium so that construction could commence at the start of 2012.
With new legislation to navigate, Lauren’s role included providing advice on the legal strategy and leading the planning team to enable the stadium to obtain consents within an extremely tight timeframe.
An important part of meeting post-earthquake Canterbury’s residential needs, the Prestons Road subdivision in Christchurch will provide over 2,500 sections.
We acted for the joint venture developer on obtaining the necessary consents for this major project.
The government has, as one of its key priorities, the recovery and rebuild of Canterbury following the devastating earthquakes in 2010 and 2011.
Greenwood Roche advised the Canterbury Earthquake Recovery Authority on anchor projects to assist with the recovery, including the health precinct, the south frame and the east frame.
Otakaro was established in April 2016 to take over some of the functions of the Canterbury Earthquake Recovery Authority, and Greenwood Roche continues to advise on various rebuild projects. We have assisted Otakaro with the development and associated property matters relating to the north, south and east frames, Margaret Mahy playground, the CTV memorial site, Te Pae Christchurch Convention Centre, the Farmers’ Market and Rauora Park.
Greenwood Roche recently secured resource consent to re-develop an existing complex for Kāinga Ora–Homes and Communities in Mount Cook, Wellington
The new development will replace the original structures that were built in the 1950’s, with four new fit-for-purpose buildings that will provide long-stay accommodation for up to 218 social housing tenants.
Twenty of the units are to be reserved to accommodate residents receiving support through the Housing First programme. This is a government-led programme to house and support people who have been homeless for a long time, or are homeless and face multiple and complex issues. The development will also include a community space, a residents support space and on-site staff.
This re-development comes as part of a nationwide $5.6 billon build programme being undertaken by Kāinga Ora to address the housing shortages across New Zealand, but particularly in the biggest urban centres where those shortages are most acute.
Greenwood Roche's team on this project was led by Lauren Semple and Rachel Murdoch.
On Friday 23 August, the Minister for Greater Christchurch Regeneration announced her approval of the Ōtākaro Avon River Corridor Regeneration Plan. The Plan was developed by Regenerate Christchurch under the Greater Christchurch Regeneration Act 2016. It outlines the vision and objectives for the future of the 600ha Ōtākaro Avon River Corridor (the former residential red zone), and directs the inclusion of an accompanying planning framework to enable the realisation of that Vision.
This area is significant in many ways for Christchurch/Otautahi. It has been and continues to be an area comprising sites and geographical features of cultural importance to Te Rūnanga o Ngāi Tahu and Te Ngāi Tūāhuriri Rūnanga. The area also comprises various other sites of historical significance to Christchurch/Ōtautahi and is traversed by the Ōtākaro Avon River which is itself a key feature of the city’s identity and urban framework. In developing this Plan Regenerate Christchurch has therefore sought to acknowledge the significance of this area to the wider Christchurch/Ōtautahi community, as well as working with the environmental constraints and opportunities that it provides.
The process has taken time and has not been without its challenges – the size and geographical constraints of the area, the various interests and feedback from stakeholders, community groups and members of the public, and the uncertainties particularly around future implementation have all been matters to carefully consider and address. The Plan’s vision and objectives and the accompanying framework for the Area are broad. While they have strong focus areas (including ecology, recreation, economic opportunity and community connection), they also seek to recognise that the regeneration of this Area will take time, and that new ideas, new technology and new activities which are not currently contemplated should be allowed to take place. The vision and objectives therefore operate as a touchstone against which future decisions can be made – ensuring a clear aspiration for the area while still allowing flexibility to adjust to a changing future.
The approval of the Plan by the Minister (and the Ombudsman’s recent finding as to its legal and evidential rigour) is a significant endorsement of the work done by the Regenerate Christchurch team on this project. Greenwood Roche lawyers, Lauren Semple and Rachel Murdoch have been privileged to advise Regenerate Christchurch on the development of this Plan, the exercise of its powers under the Act in respect of this and other projects, and its general regeneration mandate. It is extremely satisfying to see the Plan become operative and attention now turn to its implementation.
On 23rd December 2018 Hon Poto Williams, the Associate Minister for Greater Christchurch Regeneration approved a proposal to amend the Christchurch District Plan provisions for Hagley Oval to enable it to host large international fixtures and meet modern day broadcasting requirements.
Greenwood Roche assisted Regenerate Christchurch in developing the proposal on behalf of the Canterbury Cricket Trust.
The proposal approved by the Minister amends the Christchurch District Plan through section 71 of the Greater Christchurch Regeneration Act 2016 (GCR Act). The approved proposal incorporates the current resource consent conditions into the Plan and amends certain aspects of those conditions, including:
These changes will mean that Hagley Oval will be able to host day-night matches that are now required by top-tier teams, allowing Hagley Oval to be more competitive when bidding for games compared to its rival cricket grounds. With the Women’s Cricket World Cup approaching in 2021, the changes will allow Christchurch City to bid for and host games in this tournament.
Through the public participation stage of the process, 1,253 written comments were received, of which 83 percent were in favour of the proposal.
The Minister’s decision can be viewed at the following link: https://dpmc.govt.nz/sites/default/files/2019-12/Hagley Oval - Section 71 Proposal - Signed Decision Paper_1.pdf
Te Raekura Redcliffs School was opened by Prime Minister Rt Hon Jacinda Ardern on 25 June 2020 nearly 10 years’ after it was closed in response to the 2011 earthquakes.
Lauren Semple and Rachel Murdoch advised Regenerate Christchurch on the use of the Greater Christchurch Regeneration Act 2016 to facilitate the rezoning of the new school site for that purpose, and the rezoning of the former site as a reserve.
Following the acquisition of all land needed for the New Dunedin Hospital, demolition of the existing buildings has commenced - starting with the former Cadbury Warehouse. The $1.4 billion hospital will be developed over the next 6 years and will occupy land on either side of St Andrews Street.
A team from Greenwood Roche is assisting the Ministry of Health on the development of the hospital. We have acted on the alterations to the Dunedin City Plan to facilitate the hospital, the development of the site masterplan, the acquisition of the required land, the payment of compensation to affected landowners and tenants, and on the consents required for the hospital.
On 23 December 2021, the Ministry of Health and Minister of Health were granted resource consent under the COVID-19 Recovery (Fast-track Consenting) Act 2020 for the enabling works required for the new Dunedin Hospital project.
The enabling works comprise excavation and removal of existing building slabs, earthworks and dewatering, and piling required for the foundations of the hospital buildings. These works will be underway shortly, with the first piles due to be installed by mid-May. The $1.4 billion new Dunedin Hospital will support the SDHB’s continued provision of high quality health services throughout the lower South Island, and will be a key urban landmark for Dunedin, testament to the city’s long-standing role in health provision and health education.
Lauren Semple, Rachel Murdoch and William Hulme-Moir have been advising the Ministry on all consenting matters relating to the new Dunedin Hospital including applying for and obtaining Ministerial approval to utilise the COVID-19 Recovery (Fast-track Consenting) Act 2020. The new Dunedin Hospital is one of two recent projects that the team have successfully consented via this fast track route. Subsequent stages of the Dunedin hospital project will consent the above ground works for the new Inpatient, Outpatient and Logistics buildings.
The obtaining of resource consent has progressed in parallel with the acquisition of property rights for the development. Julian Smith led our team advising the Ministry on those property rights.
Partner, Greenwood Roche 2012 –
Partner, Anderson Lloyd 1999 – 2012
Chartered Member, Institute of Directors
Chair, Mercy Hospital Dunedin Limited
DDI: +64 3 353 0574
Mobile: +64 21 771 340
Phone: +64 3 353 0570
Linked in: Open a LinkedIn page
Lauren is primarily based in Christchurch.
Physical: Level 3, 1 Kettlewell Lane
680-690 Colombo Street
Mail: PO Box 139
Map: Open a Google map