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Te Wai Takamori o Te Awa Kairangi Community Update 7: March 2024

Newsletters, Te Awa Kairangi Project Team, 21 March 2024

Sod turning marks official start of Mills Street stopbank works

In the brisk morning air, several dignitaries joined together with shovel in hand to ceremonially mark the start of work to upgrade the Mills Street stopbank. This was an important milestone for Te Wai Takamori o Te Awa Kairangi, and Lower Hutt, as the existing stopbank in this location currently has the lowest level of flood protection in the area.

The upgraded stopbank will be mostly in the same location as the existing stopbank but will be approximately 1.5m higher, allowing more water to pass safely during floods. The proposed design also includes a 3.5m-wide shared path on the crest of the stopbank. The stopbank will provide flood protection during the subsequent construction of the new bridges as part of the wider Te Wai Takamori o Te Awa Kairangi project. This construction and other ongoing enabling works (geotechnical and site utilities investigations) make sense to deliver early where possible.

Work on the stopbank began 26 February and is expected to be completed early October 2024. To ensure the safety of the community during construction, the Hutt River Trail and recreational area on the eastern (city) side of the river is closed between Melling Link Bridge and Kennedy Good Bridge. The shared path on the other side of the river (western side) is still open in its entirety. For more information on this work and which paths are affected, visit teawakairangi.co.nz/our-projects/mills-st-stopbank/

From 25 March, construction activity will increase on site as the team begin gravel extraction, building the gravel processing facility and associated tracks for the dump trucks to deliver the material for the permanent stopbank. The dump trucks will be contained within the site area and will not impact road users.


Maraenuku Pā site of significance

North of the Melling Bridge and within the construction area of the Mills Street stopbank is Maraenuku Pā. The pā (settlement) is an area of cultural significance to Mana Whenua and was located on the bank of Te Awa Kairangi / Hutt River, in the vicinity of the electricity substation on Connolly St.

It was established in the period prior to colonisation but was later demolished in the Battle of Boulcott in 1846. While no trace of the pā remains today, the mana associated with the area and the history of Maraenuku Pā does, and it is something we can share with the people of Te Awa Kairangi ki Tai Lower Hutt. Chair of the Mana Whenua Steering Group and representing Te Āti Awa Taranaki Whānui, Lee Hunter said: “It’s important we recognise the history of this area and the significance of Te Awa Kairangi / Hutt River. It’s a taonga and treasured ancestral river, central to the life of Māori and the people of the Hutt Valley. It’s a reminder for us all to protect and uphold the mana and mouri (life force) of the river.”

We would like to acknowledge Morris Love (Te Āti Awa, Taranaki, Ngāti Ruanui and Ngāti Tama iwi of Taranaki) for providing the cultural history about the project area. 


We’re out in the community

With our service utilities and geotechnical teams undertaking investigations in Te Awa Kairangi ki Tai—Lower Hutt, and construction of the Mills Street stopbank, you will continue to see more of our team out in the community.


More information

For more information on Te Wai Takamori o Te Awa Kairangi project like our Facebook page for updates, visit our website, or send our team an email.

Facebook: Like our page here

Website: www.teawakairangi.co.nz

Email: info@teawakairangi.co.nz


About the Alliance

Te Wai Takamori o Te Awa Kairangi (Te Awa Kairangi) – The Soothing Waters of Te Awa Kairangi is a partnership between iwi Taranaki Whānui ki Te Upoko o Te Ika and Ngāti Toa Rangatira, Greater Wellington Regional Council, NZ Transport Agency - Waka Kotahi, Hutt City Council, and the Alliance of AECOM and Fletcher Construction, delivering RiverLink.

The Alliance has been established to deliver the RiverLink project, which includes crucial flood protection and river restoration work, improvements to public transport, walking and cycling routes, local roads and the State Highway 2 Melling Interchange, as well as urban revitalisation of the Lower Hutt city centre.

You can learn more about the project at www.teawakairangi.co.nz