Environment, planning & resource management

Helping you navigate environmental legislation to achieve your business objectives

We’re the team clients call on for their commercial, residential and industrial projects, land use planning, infrastructure development, public works and consenting.

That’s because we succeed in delivering each client’s specific objectives and drivers. We know the pathway through several complex legislative and regulatory approval processes. We add further value by committing to understand the working environment you operate in, your key stakeholder relationships, the likely challenges, and the big ticket risks.

We pride ourselves on being innovative and commercial. We challenge business as usual to create efficiency and benefits, and proactively manage risk. We collaborate effectively to get the best out of working in multi-disciplinary teams.

If you choose to work with us you’ll benefit from our extensive expertise in the Resource Management Act and other environmental legislation that will govern your project outcomes. You will get a bespoke legal team and a project strategy that will meet your particular objectives, budget and timing needs. We will also identify and introduce our other legal specialists and external consultant contacts to you to ensure you get ‘nose to tail’ input across your project where needed, and at the right level for the job.

Our advice spans the Resource Management Act, Public Works Act, local government matters, development contributions and other local authority charges, and district and regional planning and policy. We understand the range of highly technical areas involved in resource management projects, such as water quality and allocation, discharges to land, air, water and the coastal marine area, ecology, noise and vibration, climate change, land acquisition, land use planning and structure planning, and iwi and Māori matters. Our practice is to make this complexity sound straightforward so your key messages are not diluted when presenting your case to regulators, decision-makers and stakeholders.

Our large-scale project experience includes major ports and airports, roads of national significance, landfills, coal mines, irrigation schemes and a variety of commercial, office, retail and residential developments. We are also experienced in the telecommunications, electricity and gas sectors. We work with both traditional and alternative project structures, including public private partnerships (PPPs) and alliances. We also conduct environmental due diligence for mergers and acquisitions and other corporate and property transactions, including advising on sensitive land applications under the Overseas Investment Act, new developments and property LIM reviews.

We always look for win-win solutions for our clients and other stakeholders to resolve disputes. However, if settlements cannot be reached, we will be in your corner when advocating at Council hearings, in the District and Environment Courts, the High Court and beyond.

Experience highlights

We have advised:

  • the New Zealand Transport Agency on the Pūhoi to Warkworth project, undertaking extensive work as the legal team of the Further North Alliance. Further North is believed to be the first time (globally) a law firm has been part of an integrated planning alliance. Further North secured all statutory approvals required to construct and operate the Pūhoi to Warkworth section of the Ara Tūhono – Pūhoi to Wellsford Road of National Significance

  • Queenstown Airport Corporation in obtaining the statutory approvals for a separate taxiway and appropriate separation distance from the main runway required to enable a major expansion of Queenstown Airport, which includes plans for a new international terminal

  • Ryman Healthcare, New Zealand’s leading retirement village provider, on a range of environmental and consenting matters related to the development of new villages, including the consenting of the Petone, Howick, Birkenhead and Greenlane Retirement Villages; and lobbying Auckland Council and the Government on the Government's special housing area policy

  • Bathurst Resources and its New Zealand subsidiary Buller Coal on its successful resource consent application for the Escarpment coal mine (estimated 4.6m tonne coal reserve) on the Denniston Plateau on the West Coast of the South Island

  • an overseas investor on how best to secure resource consents for the development of New Zealand’s largest resort, including obtaining Overseas Investment Act approval, establishing key positive working relationships with different stakeholder groups and obtaining a suite of complex resource consents and other statutory approvals

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    Ranked Tier One for environment, projects and resource management work by independent legal directory Legal 500 Asia Pacific 2016.

                                                            Litigation & dispute resolution; Mergers & acquisitions; Property & real estate; Public law; Regulatory law

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