Whanganui District Council has given the green light to a new housing area west of Springvale.
Independent commissioners recommended the council approve a Springvale Structure Plan, unchanged from the one which went out for consultation last year.
The plan has been developed to facilitate new housing in the Mosston Rd, Fox Rd and Fitzherbert Ave areas.
The plan proposes a high-quality urban environment, walkable neighbourhoods, with streets well-connected to public spaces and a shared cycleway network linking to schools and adjacent areas, and clear management of stormwater and traffic, notably protection of the heavy vehicle function of Mosston Rd.
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Provision for a neighbourhood park is made south of Fox Rd along with protection and potential enhancement of the Tītoki Wetland, an area of high cultural and ecological value.
Whanganui mayor Hamish McDouall said the purpose of the plan change was to meet projected housing demand for land to 2065.
"It is a significant part of expanding the profile of Whanganui's built environment which will allow for a lot of new sections to be developed over time," he said.
"The rezoning represents a sustainable approach to city growth, planned to ensure economic, social and environment benefits are secured for future generations, in line with planning best practice."
Hapū, iwi, landowners, community groups and technical experts have informed the preparation of the Springvale Structure Plan in relation to ecological, archaeological, cultural, traffic and stormwater management options.
Whanganui District Council planning manager Hamish Lampp said significant subdivision has already been lodged with the council and more were expected now that the growth area is zoned for housing.
"The adoption of the Structure Plan also coincides with the construction of the Fitzherbert Avenue extension, linking Springvale with Mosston Rd, with works likely to start in December this year," Lampp said.