Multifunctional Rural Space: A Case Study of Rural Change and Planning within the Cromwell Basin
It is evident through the literature that rural areas are continually evolving and changing. From a New Zealand planning perspective it is important to understand the implications and factors driving this change in order to achieve the sustainable management of resources whilst enabling people and communities to provide for their social, economic and cultural well-being. This thesis employs an interpretative, qualitative research approach to investigate how the rural areas around the Cromwell Basin have changed over the last 40 – 50 years and to understand the implications or effects of these changes. The Cromwell Basin was chosen as a case study location as it is an area which provides a very real insight into post-productivist and multifunctional rural land use changes. This research found the rural areas of the Cromwell Basin have undergone significant change as land has shifted from being utilised for small scale pastoral farming and mixed crop orchards to being utilised for the intensification and specialist niche foci on cherry and viticulture production. However, it was also acknowledged business owners have diversified the use of their land and rural areas are now being consumed by both tourists and permanent residents. These findings suggest the Cromwell Basin has characteristics which represent both a productivist and post-productivist agriculture regime. Therefore a better way to conceptualise this emerging rural environment is through the notion of multifunctionality. From a planning perspective this presents a number of challenges as rural areas are no longer valued solely for the lands productive ability. Although the research found planning has been relatively conducive to the change that has occurred there is now the belief that planning has become reactionary and is not keeping pace with the growth. Five recommendations are presented which provide guidance for planning policy and the local community to better foster and manage planning for multifunctional rural areas.
Advisor: Nel, Etienne
Degree Name: Master of Planning
Degree Discipline: Geography
Publisher: University of Otago
Keywords: Cromwell; Rural; Planning; Multifunctional; post-productivist; productivist
Research Type: Thesis