The Christchurch Central Development Unit says landowners have not been left in limbo although designations have been lifted on land in the city.
The Canterbury Earthquake Recovery Authority (CERA) had initially designated 51 properties for developing public spaces but 28 of those privately-owned properties have had their designations lifted.
The designated land was to enable the Crown to develop a new public space network, to support private sector development.
Christchurch Central Development Unit acting director Baden Ewart said designations were never set in stone.
"We've been working with the landowners through time. Some have made choices to build their businesses in different directions.
"But in terms of getting to certainty, the process we've gone through, which ended up last year with the new planning rules, has enabled some folk to do developments on their businesses they were otherwise unable to do."
He said the authority had worked with land owners over time and designations have only now become more certain.