Frequently asked questions about construction, noise and consents.

Construction noise - are there time limits for when I can undertake construction?

Many construction and demolition activities are noisy. However, noise generated during construction, maintenance, and demolition work is generally of a temporary nature and is to be expected. Provided ongoing noise doesn't happen during inconvenient times, the adverse effects can generally be avoided or reduced.

NZ Standards 6803:1999 Acoustics – Construction noise allows for the production of significant noise between the hours of 7.30am to 6pm during weekdays. For more information, and to understand the set upper limits in db(A) for construction work noise in residential areas, please visit Standards New Zealand - Construction Noise: Know the Limits.

The standard also contains provisions relating to:

  • the measurement of noise from construction, maintenance, and demolition work
  • the assessment of such noise to determine whether action is required to control those noise emissions.

In the event of non-compliance, action can be taken under the appropriate sections of the Resource Management Act.

If noisy work is planned, such as jack hammering, concrete cutting and pouring, discuss this with nearby residents beforehand. A sign on site or distribution of leaflets to neighbouring properties explaining the hours and duration of the operation may help to prevent complaints.

To report an issue please contact the Council on 0800 965 468 (0800WMKGOV), email or use the Snap Send Solve app.

Note: To ensure the correct location of the issue is recorded, please send from where an issue has occurred. If you can't, send us the Snap Send Solve with as much location detail in the content as you can. Issues reported using Snap Send Solve can only be attended to during normal office hours.

Do I need a building consent for a shed, tunnel house or glass house?

A building consent is required before building a shed, tunnel house or glasshouse unless the detached building falls under certain exemption criteria. If the shed, tunnel house or glasshouse falls under any of the below exemptions, you may not need a building consent:

  • Buildings up to 10 square metres in floor area
  • Single-storey detached buildings exceeding 10, but not exceeding 30 square metres in floor area, constructed of lightweight materials
  • Buildings up to 30 square metres in floor area using a kitset or prefabricated building where a manufacturer or supplier has had the design carried out or reviewed by a Chartered Professional Engineer
  • Buildings up to 30 square metres in floor area where a Licensed Building Practitioner is to carry out or supervise design and construction.

If the shed, tunnel house or glasshouse is closer than its own height from either the boundary or a residential building a building consent is required.

Before you start building please make sure you meet all the exemption requirements. Since 31 August 2020, several new building consent exemptions are in place regarding garden sheds.  Check the full summary of exemptions.

All exempt work must comply with any other relevant legislation, such as the Building Code, the Resource Management Act 1991, and the Waimakariri District Plan.

Depending on the size and design of your structure, the work (design and/or construction) may be required to be carried out by a Chartered Professional Engineer and/or Licensed Building Practitioner (LBP).

If your structure is close to a boundary, and you have the written approval from your neighbours, you can apply for a Deemed Permitted Boundary Activity. This application replaces the need to apply for a resource consent but you may still need to apply for a building consent, if required.  For further information check out the Building Services page or call us on 0800 965 468.

For more information please contact the Council on 0800 965 468 (0800WMKGOV) or email

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