The Canterbury police district has been streamlined into a new two-area structure after a district review.
The four current policing areas will be replaced with just two forces - Christchurch Metro and Canterbury Rural.
Police chiefs say the move brings the force into line with other district structures and with national policing priorities.
The move does not mean any job cuts, drop in staff numbers, or station closures, District Commander Superintendent Gary Knowles said.
"What we are doing is reorganising the high-level structure in a new way that fits with our prevention focus, and fits with the new post-earthquake environment."
The Christchurch Metro Area will encompass the entire Christchurch city, which is currently split across three different policing areas.
It will also take in the North Canterbury and Selwyn sub-areas.
The Canterbury Rural Area will largely encompass the existing Mid-South Canterbury Area and functions.
The new structure retains all existing police stations, and existing staff numbers are maintained.
Superintendent Knowles says the new structure is primarily about reorganising the district's existing resources into new functional areas.
"The move to a single area to cover Christchurch city makes a lot of sense in the current environment."
District operations will be realigned into four new functional areas: investigation, response, prevention and support, each led by an inspector or detective inspector.
Criminal investigation teams will remain area-based, as they are under the existing structure.
Other changes involve the realignment of workgroups and roles across different functional groups.
"The creation of a new prevention group also allows us to bring together many of our existing functions which are focused on preventing crime," Superintendent Knowles said.
"This change will ensure we have the management systems in place to focus on frontline policing and on prevention activities, so we can continue delivering outstanding police services to the people of Canterbury."
Some existing management positions have been changed and new ones created as a result of the review, and Superintendent Knowles said he expects existing managers will be deployed into the new roles.
At lower levels, most district staff will remain in the same or similar roles. In some cases, reporting lines and/or work locations may change. Much of this detail has yet to be finalised, and in the next phase of the review managers will work through the planning and detail over the coming weeks.
The review proposal, released in May, attracted some 40 submissions representing 55 police staff. A comprehensive submission was made by the Police Association.
Police also met with a range of external stakeholders to present the proposal and seek feedback.
Superintendent Knowles said he hopes to have the new structure fully in place and operational by the time the new Christchurch Central Station opens in December.
- APNZBy Kurt Bayer @KurtBayerAPNZ Email Kurt