RiverLink

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Greater Wellington Regional Council, Hutt City Council and Waka Kotahi NZ Transport Agency are working collaboratively on RiverLink to deliver three separate but interdependent projects: Flood protection, Making Places Urban Development Plan, and Melling Transport Improvements.

RiverLink will make Hutt City more resilient, more connected and more vibrant.

Melling Transport Improvements

In January 2020, the Government announced the NZ Upgrade Programme – a major infrastructure funding package. This includes funding for transport improvements at Melling, which will be delivered by the Transport Agency, as part of RiverLink. Construction is expected to begin in late 2022 and be completed in 2026. The transport improvements will include a new Melling interchange, relocating the Melling train station, and better walking and cycling links.

Flood Protection

RiverLink’s flood protection work, delivered by Greater Wellington Regional Council, is expected to safeguard residents from large flood events that could affect up to 3,000 homes, five schools and 600 businesses, with the potential to cause an estimated $1.1 billion worth of damage across the community. Recent flooding events across New Zealand have shown the need for investment in flood protection infrastructure, and the devastating consequences for communities flooded as a result of not doing so.

Urban Growth and Housing

Beyond flood protection and transport upgrades, one of the goals of the RiverLink project is to spur urban growth and encourage the construction of more central city homes in the form of apartments. Hutt City Council has unveiled a Central City Transformation Plan to enable this growth. A new riverbank promenade, and a pedestrian and cycling bridge crossing the river near the relocated Melling station, are key parts of RiverLink that will be delivered by Hutt City Council and transform Lower Hutt.




Greater Wellington Regional Council, Hutt City Council and Waka Kotahi NZ Transport Agency are working collaboratively on RiverLink to deliver three separate but interdependent projects: Flood protection, Making Places Urban Development Plan, and Melling Transport Improvements.

RiverLink will make Hutt City more resilient, more connected and more vibrant.

Melling Transport Improvements

In January 2020, the Government announced the NZ Upgrade Programme – a major infrastructure funding package. This includes funding for transport improvements at Melling, which will be delivered by the Transport Agency, as part of RiverLink. Construction is expected to begin in late 2022 and be completed in 2026. The transport improvements will include a new Melling interchange, relocating the Melling train station, and better walking and cycling links.

Flood Protection

RiverLink’s flood protection work, delivered by Greater Wellington Regional Council, is expected to safeguard residents from large flood events that could affect up to 3,000 homes, five schools and 600 businesses, with the potential to cause an estimated $1.1 billion worth of damage across the community. Recent flooding events across New Zealand have shown the need for investment in flood protection infrastructure, and the devastating consequences for communities flooded as a result of not doing so.

Urban Growth and Housing

Beyond flood protection and transport upgrades, one of the goals of the RiverLink project is to spur urban growth and encourage the construction of more central city homes in the form of apartments. Hutt City Council has unveiled a Central City Transformation Plan to enable this growth. A new riverbank promenade, and a pedestrian and cycling bridge crossing the river near the relocated Melling station, are key parts of RiverLink that will be delivered by Hutt City Council and transform Lower Hutt.



  • Questions posed during ecology design walkover

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    by Charlotte, over 3 years ago
    While RiverLink is designed to protect the lives and livelihoods of people in Lower Hutt, the river’s world of fish, bugs and plants matters too.

    The project has to resolve these potentially competing interests, and that’s why the design team and ecology experts recently spent a morning inspecting the RiverLink project. The question they posed was: how can flood protection and the environment work hand in hand to enhance the ecology of the river and floodplain?

    It’s a great question, because the scale of the construction work being talked about could have significant impact on the river and if it...

    While RiverLink is designed to protect the lives and livelihoods of people in Lower Hutt, the river’s world of fish, bugs and plants matters too.

    The project has to resolve these potentially competing interests, and that’s why the design team and ecology experts recently spent a morning inspecting the RiverLink project. The question they posed was: how can flood protection and the environment work hand in hand to enhance the ecology of the river and floodplain?

    It’s a great question, because the scale of the construction work being talked about could have significant impact on the river and if it isn’t managed right could damage the rivers environment. While there is legislation to protect against or minimise this damage, we want to do better than just rely on this process. For that reason we are making ecological values of the river an important part of our design discussions, sitting alongside recreation, culture, and heritage, transport, and flood security.

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  • Big turnout for riverside design forum

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    by Charlotte, over 3 years ago
    Lower Hutt’s Dowse Art Museum was abuzz with ideas and enthusiasm recently as nearly 300 people gave us their views on what they want to see along the Te Awakairangi/Hutt Riverside and within its river corridor.

    The focus of all the activity over two days was how we should plan for activities, amenities and environments through the stretch of the river between the Ewen and Kennedy-Good bridges. People
    were invited to view a video on the project, review great ideas for riverside amenities and landscapes from here and overseas, and use symbols and stickers to give us their
    ideas on...

    Lower Hutt’s Dowse Art Museum was abuzz with ideas and enthusiasm recently as nearly 300 people gave us their views on what they want to see along the Te Awakairangi/Hutt Riverside and within its river corridor.

    The focus of all the activity over two days was how we should plan for activities, amenities and environments through the stretch of the river between the Ewen and Kennedy-Good bridges. People
    were invited to view a video on the project, review great ideas for riverside amenities and landscapes from here and overseas, and use symbols and stickers to give us their
    ideas on how we can make the area look great and work for the community.

    “We got really useful and clear feedback on access to the river, what kinds of paths people want along the riverside and on the stopbanks and on the proposed pedestrian and cycleway bridge,” says urban planner Marc Baily of consultants Boffa Miskell. “The community also showed a lively interest in garden-like landforms which look lovely and promote diverse ecology, active swimming, picnicking and play areas where you can sit and enjoy the river.”

    Three questions were also asked about the value of the river to the Lower Hutt community: 82 percent of people responding said revitalisation of the city is very important; 61 percent that its
    connection to the river is very important; 61 Percent believed having people live in the city centre was also very important.

    “These findings are right in line with the community’s decision to go ahead with the RiverLink project,” says Marc, “which was favoured both as a flood protection scheme and as a city rejuvenation plan
    through Hutt City Council’s Making Places project. They show the community really values the relationship between the river and the CBD and that linking them will be key to re-enlivening the area. ”

    The community’s input through the community design workshop is now being applied to potential urban landscape design options.


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  • Hutt River Environmental Strategy progressing well

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    by Charlotte, over 3 years ago

    Alongside the RiverLink project we are very aware of the Hutt River environment. There was an extensive review of the Hutt River Environmental Strategy earlier this year, which included a lot of community discussion.

    Read more about the Hutt River Environmental Strategy

    Our review of the Hutt River Environmental Strategy – which sets guidelines for the development of the entire river corridor from Upper Hutt to the harbour – is making real progress, with a presentation to community groups stimulating useful feedback on the kind of environment they want to develop alongside the Hutt River and the things...

    Alongside the RiverLink project we are very aware of the Hutt River environment. There was an extensive review of the Hutt River Environmental Strategy earlier this year, which included a lot of community discussion.

    Read more about the Hutt River Environmental Strategy

    Our review of the Hutt River Environmental Strategy – which sets guidelines for the development of the entire river corridor from Upper Hutt to the harbour – is making real progress, with a presentation to community groups stimulating useful feedback on the kind of environment they want to develop alongside the Hutt River and the things they want to do there.

    So far we’ve undertaken a survey of activity, spoken to a range of interest groups and began a round of presentations on the survey, as well as asked for feedback on the subject through the Greater Wellington Regional Council website.

    The development of the strategy is of fundamental importance to the RiverLink project because it will guide our approach to developing the riverbank environment through Lower Hutt’s CBD. A draft strategy for public consultation is due early next year.