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Work underway to restore culturally significant stream to good health

Local Our Work Featured news
PUBLISHED: 21 FEB 2023

Work has begun on returning a culturally significant stream in Waitara to good health, as part of NPDC’s $20 million Waitara Stormwater Project.

The $5.8m project will reconnect the Tangaroa Stream to the Waitara River, improve its ability to drain stormwater from heavy rainfall more quickly, and establish a healthy habitat for birds, invertebrates, and fish – restoring the mauri (life force) of this ecosystem. 

The work kicks off this week with invasive weeds and trees being cleared from the stream bank, with the Government contributing $1.8m from its Fresh Water Improvement Fund to the project.

“Tangaroa’s problems have been a long time in the making and I’m thrilled that we’ve worked with Manukorihi and Otaraua hapū to not only fix those issues today, but ensure the community is involved in retaining the stream’s mauri for generations to come,” says NPDC Three Waters Manager Mark Hall.

For decades, Tangaroa Stream has been clogged with silt and weeds, which reduced water flow and resulted in flooding during heavy rain.

It formed a natural boundary for Manukorihi Pā and as an important food bowl, it was vital to the success of mana whenua of the area for many generations.

Part of the stream though Pennington Park is currently cut off from the Waitara River at North St, preventing the passage of fish, and a significant section though Owae Marae is diverted though underground pipes. 

When the four-year project is finished, the buried sections of the stream will be opened up to daylight and the Tangaroa reconnected to the river, its channel cleared and its bank replanted, and a new reserve off Masters Lane created.

The Government is contributing $1.8m from its Fresh Water Improvement Fund to the project.

Fast facts

  • In December 2020 the Government provided $1.8m from its Fresh Water Improvement Fund for the Tangaroa project. The $4m is being met by NPDC as part of our $248m investment to ‘fix the plumbing’ in our district.
  • The first stage of the Waitara Stormwater Project began in November last year, with the laying of a stormwater pipe down Richmond Street. That project continues at the Richmond/Harris/Princess intersection.
  • NPDC collects, manages and disposes of stormwater run-off from around 6,600ha of urban areas across the district.
  • There are 284km of stormwater pipes, 4,911 manholes, 9,117 inlets and outlets, three wetlands and three dams.

 

Caption: Work is underway to clear trees and invasive weeds and from the banks of the Tangaroa Stream.