Ōtaki to North of Levin moves forward with key consenting milestone


The Ōtaki to North of Levin new highway project has reached a key milestone this week, bringing a safer and more resilient SH1 route one step closer. This major project for the Horowhenua is part of the Government’s transformational NZ Upgrade Programme.

Following Ministers’ approval, the project team yesterday lodged the Notices of Requirement (NoR) and resource consent applications for the new highway and shared use path with Horizons and Greater Wellington Regional Councils, and Horowhenua and Kāpiti Coast District Councils. If approved, these applications reflect the key environmental approvals required for the project to be built.

Director of Regional Relationships Linda Stewart says this is a significant milestone for the project.

“This step provides more certainty for our landowners and community about where the new transport corridor will be and how it considers the environmental setting. This project is critical to significantly improve safety and resilience for those travelling throughout the Horowhenua District and lower North Island,” Ms Stewart says.

Waka Kotahi is developing the project together with our partners - Muaūpoko Tribal Authority and local hapū of Ngāti Raukawa in an innovative way to ensure we tread lightly on the whenua and create a positive, enduring legacy for the community.

“This moment signals the culmination of considerable mahi, tautoko and debate by many over recent years. We acknowledge that mahi as well as the inarguable need for improved safety, resilience and future-proofing of the road and roadsides in the corridor from Ōtaki to Taitoko and wider into the Rohe,” Tim Tukapua, Chair of Muaūpoko Tribal Authority says.

“Alongside that is the imperative to protect, preserve and prioritise cultural, ecological, social, and environmental values and taonga. In partnership with Waka Kotahi and Nga Hapū o Ngāti Raukawa we are committed to contributing the 700-year (plus) Muaūpoko perspective to inform and add value for our people and our community at every step,” Mr Tukapua says. 

Representatives from local hapū of Ngāti Raukawa say the project provides a unique pathway for the eight Raukawa marae and 10 hapū and iwi to work in partnership with Muaūpoko Tribal Authority and Waka Kotahi and share the opportunities and challenges that the new highway will present.

“The shared collective vision and values for the environment and the community in terms of impact and opportunity are what drives the momentum and underpins the roading project for all of us,” the representatives say.

The Ō2NL team and Horowhenua District Council have been working closely together on the business case, design and development of the new highway and shared path, recognising the important role this infrastructure will have in the future social, economic and environmental prosperity of the district and the surrounding region.

Horowhenua District Council Mayor Bernie Wanden is enthusiastic about the progress.

“Our community deserve the right to safer roads, resilient connectivity and surety around project delivery.  We are grateful to our iwi partners and Waka Kotahi for their collaborative approach and persistent focus on achieving the right outcomes for our local community and the many Kiwi who will benefit from this much-needed investment in national infrastructure.”

The four Councils’ regulatory arms will receive the Notices of Requirement and resource consent applications and will process these accordingly.

Waka Kotahi has been in touch with landowners directly affected by the proposed designation and will continue working with and supporting them throughout the process. This is in addition to the wider public consultation carried out to date.

The consent application documents will soon be available on the Waka Kotahi website