At a glance

This is an infographic showing statistics for the region of Te Upoko o te Ika a Māui Greater Wellington. It includes information about the population in 2018, projected population in 2048, Māori population and percentage of overall regional population in

Arataki Te Upoko o te Ika a Māui – Greater Wellington regional direction [PDF, 2.2 MB]

Arataki Te Upoko o te Ika a Māui – Greater Wellington statistics table - infographic alternative [PDF, 138 KB]

The September 2023 v1.1 release of Arataki includes updates to reflect the severe weather events of 2023 and make minor corrections.

Te Upoko o te Ika a Māui Greater Wellington is particularly vulnerable to seismic risk and other natural hazards. Sea level rise and more severe storms will increasingly impact on the region’s coastal communities, roads, and rail infrastructure.

Future growth must build on high levels of public transport use, walking, and cycling to:

  • create stronger communities
  • connect people to employment, education, and essential services
  • support lower-income communities in Porirua and Te Awa Kairangi Hutt Valley.

Despite many people using public transport, the region still must reduce private vehicle use and encourage lower-emission transport options. Programmes like Let’s Get Wellington Moving (LGWM) will help with this shift.

Te Upoko o te Ika a Māui is the third largest regional economy in Aotearoa New Zealand. The region also has the highest median household income. In the wider region though, there are still some areas of high deprivation.

The population of Te Upoko o te Ika a Māui will grow from 525,900 to about 612,000 by 2048, or 10% of the country’s population.

Te Upoko o te Ika a Māui relies heavily on two north-south corridors, for the movement of people and freight by road and rail. This shapes the region’s transport system. Current work is committed to addressing safety, resilience, and capacity issues.

Over 30% of all journeys to work are by public transport, walking, or cycling. Ongoing investment in safe and attractive facilities can help the region build on already high rates of walking and cycling. Active modes are the primary way to reduce vehicle kilometres travelled (VKT). Increasing the share of freight moved by rail and coastal shipping will also have an important role to play in reducing emissions.

Other critical transport challenges facing the region over the next three decades include safety, resilience, and supporting the transition to a low-carbon economy. 

Focusing our efforts 

The transport challenges for Te Upoko o te Ika a Māui Greater Wellington need to be tackled in a cohesive way for efficient and effective progress. The directions below identify the most important issues to be resolved over the next 10 years to make progress towards transport outcomes.

  • Reduce vehicle kilometres travelled (VKT), focusing on Te Whanganui-a-Tara Wellington, in a way that’s fair, equitable, and improves quality of life.
  • Enable and support the region’s transition to a low-carbon economy.
  • Maintain and improve the resilience and efficiency of interregional road and rail connections, especially north to the rest of the North Island and passenger/freight ferry connections to the South Island.
  • Improve access to social and economic opportunities, especially by public transport, walking, and cycling.
  • Significantly reduce harm caused by the region’s transport system, especially through improved road safety and reduced pollutants dangerous to health.
  • Actively support, enable, and encourage growth and development in areas that have good travel choices and shorter trip lengths.
  • Rapidly accelerate delivery of walking and cycling networks, predominantly through reshaping existing streets, to make these options safe and attractive.
  • Explore new and emerging technologies, such as on-demand services, to improve access to social and economic opportunities, especially in areas with fewer sustainable transport choices.
  • Better understand the impact of future economic transformation on travel patterns and freight volumes.
  • Explore moving to a more multimodal freight system with greater use of rail.
  • Confirm how resilience risks will be addressed over time, and work with communities to plan when to defend, accommodate, or retreat.
  • Continue to implement road safety plans and programmes including those focused for iwi Māori.
  • Improve or maintain, as appropriate, physical access to marae, papakāinga, wāhi tapu, and wāhi taonga.

These will be updated over time to focus effort on the most critical matters.

Arataki Te Upoko o te Ika a Māui – Greater Wellington regional direction [PDF, 2.2 MB]