Inner city living could soon become easier in Hastings, as part of a council plan to revitalise the city centre.
Hastings District Council has approved recommendations on the Variation 5 plan change to make residential development in the inner city easier.
The hope is having people living in the inner city will increase vibrancy, and make the streets safer because more people are around.
The change will allow residential development on the upper levels of commercial buildings in the Central Commercial Zone by making it a permitted activity.
Until now, residential activity and development has been a permitted activity if the building has designated retail frontage, which is contained to 12 blocks in the inner city.
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Councillor Damon Harvey said the council had been working on revitalising the CBD, and the missing aspect was people living in the inner city.
"It's been an aim to have that, so to have people live, work and play within a CBD is vital."
He said the council had been working on the plan change for about three years.
"It's great that we are nearly there."
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Another upside was having more people in the CBD increased safety in the area.
"The last we want is a CBD that pretty much closes down at 5 o'clock. We want it to be something that is open and active a lot longer."
Another aspect was helping to reduce housing shortage, although it would not be a silver bullet.
"It's not the only solution, it is part of the solution."
"Going forward I would like to see more multi-storey, multi-level type apartment living within the CBD as well."
Hastings City Business Association chairman Craig Riddiford said the move would have a positive impact on businesses in the area, especially those in the hospitality industry.
"It's going to have a great impact."
"If you've got more people living in the city then you've got more people spending money in the city."
He said having more people around would also encourage those who lived outside the city centre to come in, increasing vibrancy.
"It's great to see good leadership with the council with these initiatives, to make sure that the CBD continues to thrive."
There will be various-sized apartments available, including studio apartments which must be 40sqm, one bedroom at 50sqm, two bedrooms at 70sqm, and three or more bedrooms at 90sq m plus.
The council has approved the recommendations from the hearings committee be made public.
The recommendations will come into effect if not appealed within a 30-day period.
Read the proposed inner city plan changes here .