Planning and engineering guidance for potentially liquefaction-prone land

Planning and engineering guidance for potentially liquefaction-prone land

This document provides guidance for a risk-based process to manage liquefaction-related risk in land use planning and development decision-making. While this guidance specifically focuses on liquefaction and its consequences, it is part of a broader objective that buildings and infrastructure be located and built with appropriate consideration of all aspects of the land conditions and natural hazards. This document builds on the understanding that there are equally important parts to be played by resource management land use planning (covered by the Resource Management Act (RMA)) and engineering design (covered by the Building Act).
This guidance examines adverse effects from earthquake-induced liquefaction, with a focus on identifying if the liquefaction is likely to be consequential to land, buildings and infrastructure. This links in to the broader consideration of natural hazards provided by the RMA, relating to the effects on life, property and other aspects of the environment.
The focus on liquefaction is a result of the experience of the Canterbury Earthquake Sequence 2010–2011 and responds to recommendations 186 to 189 made by the Royal Commission of Inquiry into Building Failure caused by the Canterbury Earthquakes. These recommendations relate to the role of regional councils and territorial authorities in managing liquefaction-related risk, with a focus on regional policy guidance, regional and district plans, resource and subdivision consents.
This guidance has a corresponding focus on this regulatory framework, but it should be appreciated that there are a variety of other tools that are also available as part of a comprehensive approach to natural hazards management (eg broader central and local government planning, infrastructure and asset management strategies, and provision of information).

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