There is a commitment from Waka Kotahi to establishing strong partnerships with tāngata whenua through our work. In delivering an integrated transport system we have an important role to play in understanding tāngata whenua perspectives and issues, which unlock wider opportunities that better respond to Māori aspirations.

The adoption of Te Ara Kotahi: our Māori strategy has been an important step for Waka Kotahi because it recognises Te Tiriti o Waitangi as the foundation of a special relationship between Māori and the Crown, and provides strategic direction on what this means for how we do business.

Te Ara Kotahi – our Māori strategy

The Takitimu North Link project is the most significant roading project in the Bay of Plenty to date. The alignment for the Takitimu North Link Stage One project is within the rohe of Ngāti Ranginui iwi, and includes the hapū of Ngāti Hangarau, Ngāti Kahu, Ngāti Pango, Pirirākau, Ngāti Rangi, Ngāti Taka and Ngai Tamarawaho .

Te Paerangi and Pirirākau

For Māori who are active participants in the Takitimu North Link partnership, the project presents an opportunity to exercise kaitiaki responsibilities, work together for the betterment of their community and rohe, advocate for the wellbeing of Māori, develop long term relationships with Waka Kotahi, and contribute to other projects.

Waka Kotahi has worked with Treaty partnership group, Te Paerangi (represented by hapū of Ngāti Hangarau, Ngāti Kahu, Ngāti Pango, Ngāti Rangi, Ngāti Taka and Ngai Tamarawaho), and Pirirākau, for the Takitimu North Link (Stage One) project, establishing relationships with its members over many years in the project’s history. In September 2020 tāngata whenua gifted the project name Takitimu North Link in acknowledgement of the area’s cultural significance and whakapapa connections of the local hapū to the Takitimu Waka.

Hapū representatives have supported the project to develop a Cultural Mitigation Plan and Protocols which are a critical part of the contract and obligations for the construction of the road. Some key areas of this partnership kaupapa are:

  • environmental initiatives and native planting
  • investing in Māori business
  • job and training opportunities
  • cultural artwork and symbolism
  • embracing Te Ao Māori, Mātauranga Māori and Te Reo Māori.

Hapū initiatives and opportunities

The scale of the Takitimu North Link Stage One project presents the opportunity to seize opportunities to create change, and delivering cultural, social and environmental outcomes that benefit local communities, in the spirit of Te Ara Kotahi.

We are now seeking registrations of interest from hapū and whānau who would like to be kept up to date with job and business opportunities coming out of the project. Please email us at to register your interest in being added to our database.