Draft strategy for the future of the harbour revealed

An ambitious draft strategy for the future of the Whāingaroa (Raglan) Harbour, which includes actions to improve the health of the harbour and improve walking, cycling and boating connections around the harbour, has been revealed.

Waikato District Council is now seeking feedback from the Whāingaroa community before the plan is finalised later this year. 

Hapū representatives, stakeholders and the wider community shared what was important to them during extensive engagement in late 2021, and Waikato District Council Community Connections Manager Megan May says the draft plan is a reflection of that feedback. 

“Residents told us that improving and protecting the health of the harbour, making sure it remains a ready source of kaimoana and being able to get around the harbour more easily were really important, so those things are central in the plan.

“We’d now like to hear from the community again to make sure there’s nothing we’ve missed and need to consider.”

The strategy features important history about Whāingaroa, a summary of feedback previously shared by the community, sets out four strategic goals to guide future work around the harbour and a detailed action plan which aims to achieve these goals.

The action plan includes actions to address parking issues at the wharf, enhance the Te Akau boat ramp to make it easier for residents to travel to and from Whāingaroa by boat and limit commercialisation of the harbour.

Raglan Community Board member Dennis Amoore says the plan has been a community wide effort.

“We have worked very closely with our hapū partners, and with stakeholders including businesses and with the wider community to get the plan to where it is. 

“I would encourage all Raglan residents to have a read through it and share their thoughts so that together, we can shape the future of this important space.”

Residents can view the draft strategy and have their say at https://www.waikatodistrict.govt.nz/Whaingaroa-Harbour-Strategy. Hardcopies of the strategy are also available from the Raglan Library. 

Feedback is open until 5pm on Wednesday 3 August 2022, and Council expects to finalise the plan by late September 2022. 

Work is also set to start later this year on structural repairs to future-proof the Whāingaroa wharf, and on the construction of a new pontoon and walkway on its eastern side. 

Council Project Delivery Team Leader Reuben Rink says once Council has finalised consenting details and appointed a contractor, construction start dates would be confirmed.

“Our top priority is to reduce any impact on nearby businesses and residents as much as possible, so we’ll be working closely with them throughout construction.”

Further information on these projects can also be found on Waikato District Council’s website.