1. What is the Te Awa Kairangi / Hutt River Environmental Strategy Action Plan?
Greater Wellington Regional Council (GWRC), Upper Hutt City Council (UHCC), Hutt City Council, Port Nicholson Block Settlement Trust and Ngati Toa Rangitira have worked together to produce a draft Te Awa Kairangi / Hutt River Environmental Strategy Action Plan (The Plan).
The Plan is the document that supports the delivery of environmental, recreation, facility and appearance (amenity) outcomes sought by the community. These outcomes build on the foundation of flood safety and security established by the 2001 Hutt River Floodplain Management Plan.
Once the Plan has been endorsed by the Hutt River Flood Management Subcommittee (made up from a selection of your regional and city councillors, and iwi appointees) it will be used as a guide to enhance the river. These enhancements could be done as part of large scale construction projects like RiverLink or come from community lead projects supported by local business and councils.
The Plan presents your communities vison for the river corridor and defines the goals your community wants to see for the river. It sets out what actions needed to achieve them and when these may be able to be completed.
This isn’t an entirely new document. It is based on the 2001 Hutt River Environmental Strategy which has driven improvements along the river over the past 16 years. It has supported:
· the development of the Hutt River Trail
· estuary and riverbank habitats using native plants
· the creation of a River Ranger role
· Inanga (native fish species) habitat alongside the Opahu Stream near Moera
· Protecting the swimming holes at Maoribank
· Mown open spaces and shade trees
· Footbridges over side creeks and streams
· Riverside event support
The Plan is a non-statutory document, but its content is used to guide and support design and consent processes for major projects on or near the river.
2. Why are you updating the original Hutt River Environmental Strategy?
The Hutt River corridor is our most visited regional par. It’s a place where people can walk, run, and cycle, picnic, fish and swim and enjoy being outside. However, the 2001 Hutt River Environmental Strategy is now more than 16 years old and lots of what it planned to do has been completed.
A new generation of people are now using the river and there’s a renewed focus on the environment and water quality. Plus those who have been involved in developing the Plan have figured out better ways to do things to enhance the river.
Society as a whole has also had a change in vision, moving toward more environmental and water quality focuses. This means that the community vision for the river has also shifted.
While we were engaging with people in the Hutt during the RiverLink consultation, people told us that they were keen to see an up-to-date plan for the entire Hutt River.
We took the 2001 Hutt River Environmental Strategy and talked to lots of people. We listened to their ideas and have added to and reworked the Strategy it to create the next chapter of improvement for the river. This is the Plan.
In the Environment Strategy Action Plan you’ll see the ideas that came from to Hutt Valley residents and stakeholders throughout 2016/17 about what they would like to see in the environmental plan for the Hutt River Corridor.
The feedback highlighted the special places on the river that people feel connected to and want to protect. It provided us ideas about improving the river for people and our native wildlife, and shared with us the activities that people want to see along the river during the next decade and beyond.
In development of the environmental strategy we are working with Taranaki Whanui ki te Upoko o te Ika (Port Nicholson Block Settlement Trust) and Ngati Toa Rangatira (Te Rūnanga o Toa Rangatira Inc) to support their role as kaitiaki for the river.
3. What parts of the river does the plan relate to?
The Plan applies to the Hutt River and its connections to nearby communities. The connections consider not only footpaths or tracks, but also the streams and rainwater drains that run from urban areas into the river.
On photo maps it will mostly look like the areas between the stopbanks on both sides of the river, but the strategy recognises wildlife corridors and watercourses that run up into the hills on both sides of the valley.
Along its length the strategy covers the river from the Seaview Marina right up to Kaitoke Regional Park. To make it easier to talk to communities about the river the Plan has separated the maps of the river into eight different river reaches, separated by the bridges that cross the river. Each reach of the river has been allocated a series of actions.
4. How were the actions in the plan decided?
· Through collaborative discussions between councils, iwi and communities
· Assessed, distilled and structured by GWRC and its expert advisors
· Presented in its format by GWRC and its expert advisors
· Professional expertise guided by community opinion
· Endorsed by elected representatives (your councilors) and iwi appointees
5. How will the actions in the plan be funded?
The actions in the Plan are funded in a number of ways. Everything from guiding good designs for infrastructure projects that lead to positive environmental outcomes, to ratepayer funded projects completed as part of a flood protection upgrade project (5% of the budgets of these big projects are diverted into environmental and amenity enhancements, to clubs like the Rotary Club (who put resources into connecting the Hutt River Trail, to individual contributions (like the memorial benches dotted along the trail).
You contribute to the Plans outcomes by even small simple actions like picking up rubbish, or attending a planting day, or making sure you don’t wash stuff down the rainwater drains that flow out into the river.
6. How do I give my feedback?
We want to hear what you think about the Plan and what’s being planned for the next chapter of improvement for the river.
It’s easy - you can choose to either:
2. Attend a community information sessions in Lower Hutt or in Upper Hutt for an overview of the Plan and a chat with the project team over a cup of tea.
3. Email a completed submission form to email@example.com
4. Post your ideas to us at Hutt River Environmental Strategy, Greater Wellington Regional Council, PO Box 11646, Manners Street, Wellington 6142.
Please try to provide your feedback before Friday 9 March 2018 at 5.00pm. This will give us time to consider it while we are doing final updates to the document.
The community information sessions provide a short overview of the Plan, and are your chance to find out a bit more in an informal setting and chat to the project team that developed the Plan. If you can’t make the times we have put a video copy of meeting at (insert link)
Feel free to drop into our information sessions. If you do get a chance to RSVP it will help make sure we have enough space and refreshments for everyone who wants to attend.
Monday 19 February
Upper Hutt Cosmopolitan Club, 11 Logan Street, Upper Hutt
Thursday 22 February
Avalon Park Pavilion, Avalon park, Taita Drive, Avalon, Lower Hutt
7. What will happen with my feedback?
Your feedback will be read by the project team and used to influence the shape of the document presented to the Hutt Valley Flood Management Subcommittee for their endorsement. Not all ideas will make it into the document, and if you have any questions about what happened to your ideas when the Plan is reported to council please contact us.
A summary of all feedback received is held by GWRC as part of its public records.
We aim to publish the strategy at the end of May 2018. Implementation of the strategy continues based on the previous 2001 edition of the strategy, and projects from the new strategy have been used to help guide the structure for the 2018 to 2028 long term plan.
8. Where can I get a copy of the plan?
You can download an electronic copy of the plan on this page. It is a very large file. Hard copies can also be found at your local library, council office, and at GWRC offices in Upper Hutt and Wellington.
We will publish the Plan in an online format once it has been finalised, this will make using the strategy document online or mobile device easier.
9. Who do I contact if I have questions?
Questions can be emailed to firstname.lastname@example.org