Proposed Plan Change J: Massey University Turitea Historic Area

We're proposing to recognise and protect the historic significance of the Oval on Massey’s Manawatū campus. To do this, Council is proposing to make changes to the District Plan to establish the Turitea Historic Area.


Turitea Historic Area is defined as the land containing the Oval and surrounding buildings at Massey University’s Manawatū Campus, pictured here with the Refectory (left) and McHardy Hall in the background. Image: Ian Matheson City Archives.

Commissioner's decision released: Open for appeals to Friday 17 February 2023

Proposed Plan Change: J Massey University Turitea Historic Area has been accepted by an  independent Resource Management Commissioner. No hearing was required as a decision was reached without the need for one.   

An appeal period will now open with 30 working days for any submitters who do not agree with the decision to appeal to the Environment Court. This appeal period will run from Friday 16 December 2022 to Friday 17 February 2023. If there are no appeals, we will submit the plan change to Council for the plan change to become operative.  

Commissioner's decision(PDF, 192KB)

Statement of evidence by Tara Lennard(PDF, 686KB)

Information as to right of appeal on a change to the District Plan(PDF, 122KB)

What are the proposed District Plan changes?

Section 4: Definitions - introducing a definition for the 'Turitea Historic Area' to describe what it covers. The site encompasses the Oval and the historically iconic buildings around it including the Refectory, Sir Geoffrey Peren building, McHardy Hall, the Registry building and Tiritea House.

Section 19: Institutional Zone - introducing provisions related to the use and development within the area. A map showing the extent of the new overlay is below.

This plan change will be notified on a limited notification basis, meaning only directly affected parties will be able make a submission on this proposed plan change.


This overlay map shows the area being considered for protection.

What are the benefits?

The change aims to protect the Massey Oval by retaining its open space character and preventing inappropriate development in the future.

The Oval has historical significance as one of the first purpose-built areas at Massey University, and has been in continuous use since 1929.

We have worked closely with Massey University on this plan change, which is supported by Rangitāne o Manawatū, the Historic Places Trust and the Palmerston North Defence Heritage Advisory Group.

For more information, please download the section 32 report:

Proposed Plan Change J section 32 report: Turitea Historic Area (October 2021)(PDF, 6MB)

If you've any questions or concerns, please contact Planner Tara Lennard. Email: or phone: 06 356 8199

Original submissions and further submissions

Plan Change J was only open for limited submissions from pre-identified parties with a direct relation to the proposal. We received 3 submissions and 1 further submission, which you can read below, along with a summary of the submitters' requests.

Summary of submissions: Proposed plan change J(PDF, 129KB)

S1: PN Defence Heritage Advisory Group(PDF, 463KB)

S2: Massey University(PDF, 1MB)

S3: Heritage NZ Pauhere Taonga(PDF, 178KB)

Massey University further submission(PDF, 193KB)