Nelson City Council has reviewed its Urban Environments Bylaw 2015 (No.225) as part of a regular review process designed to make sure that the Bylaw is still fit for purpose, serving the community and keeping up with change.

The Urban Environments Bylaw covers a lot of the things that help us to live alongside each other harmoniously, such as the keeping of animals, management of public health, safety and nuisance, trading in public places, control of alcohol in public places, management of reserves, and burial and cremations.

A substantial review of the Urban Environments Bylaw occurred in 2015, and only a small range of issues have arisen since that time. Consequently, most of the current Bylaw is proposed to remain the same, and there are a handful of proposed tweaks and minor wording changes that aim to simplify processes and make the Bylaw more legally robust.

A more significant change to the current Bylaw is the removal of permission to play or practise golf in Neale Park, and changes to the bylaws around trading in public places.

Golf in Neale Park has caused public safety concerns from neighbouring residents and park users, including some very near miss incidents involving golf balls landing too close to young children. It is therefore proposed that Neale Park is no longer designated as an area where golf is allowed.

Another change is that retailers will no longer be required to obtain a permit before setting up a retail display on the footpath, and instead, the amended Bylaw will rule that retail displays cannot be a hazard to pedestrians or reduce the width of the footpath available to pedestrians to less than 1.5 metres. Likewise, sandwich boards will need to be placed so that there is at least 1.5m clearance on footpaths for pedestrians.

Other Bylaw changes are being made to avoid double-up with other local government acts and legislations, including how Council sets fees – which is proposed to be managed under the Local Government Act.

Group Manager Environmental Management Clare Barton says that this review ensures that the Bylaw keeps pace with our community and its changing needs.

“The proposed changes reflect feedback that we’ve already had from our community about concerns they have. For example, we know that people being hit by golf balls has led to people no longer feeling safe to use Neale Park for monthly kite-flying days, and that’s why we are proposing stopping golf at the park. Now we want to hear whether this is a change that people welcome.”

Council is seeking the public’s views on the proposed changes and the draft Bylaw, from Monday 8 November to Wednesday 8 December 2021.

Anyone can make a submission supporting or opposing any of the suggested changes. The public is also welcome to have a look at the whole Bylaw (available on Nelson City Council’s Shape Nelson website, or at Council's Customer Service Centre and Nelson's Public Libraries) and tell Council what you think of the changes, or what else should change.

Submissions can be made:
By email:
By post: Nelson City Council, PO Box 645, Nelson 7040
Dropbox: Customer Service Centre, 110 Trafalgar Street, Nelson.

Submissions are open from Monday 8 November 2021 and must be received no later than 5pm Wednesday 8 December 2021.

Any person who wishes to speak in support of their submission will be given the opportunity to address Council at a hearing in early 2022.