The Downtown programme is creating a generous and welcoming destination along the water’s edge that is recognisably Tāmaki Makaurau. 
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Friday, 18 June 2021

Kia ora neighbours and friends,

Welcome to our second to last project newsletter. There will be no update next week, with the final release being circulated after the Downtown Project has been officially opened by Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern on 02 July. 

Below you'll find a series of images capturing just how much the Ferry Basin and Quay Street have changed in just two years - not forgetting the important seawall strengthening works that are not visible from above.

Kia kaha, happy Matariki and please don't forget to keep using your NZ COVID Tracer app ♥

Quay Street & Te Wananga Jan 2019 to June 2021
2019 January
2019 June
2020 January
2020 June
2021 January
2021 June
Lower Hobson Street intersection Dec 2019 - June 2021
2019 December
2021 June
What's on Downtown

Matariki 2021

image credit:

The rising of Matariki star cluster (also known to come as the Pleiades star cluster) in the skies above Aotearoa is an important time in the Maramataka (Māori lunar calendar) as it signalises a time for renewal and celebration and the start of the Māori new year . 

The Matariki star cluster contains hundreds of stars but only nine are visible by eye. Each of these nine stars has a significant story and significance in Māori culture.

According to one Māori myth, the cluster represents a whaea or mother - Matariki - and her six daughters Tupuānuku, Tupuārangi, Waipunarangi, Waitī, Waitā and Ururangi.

Ka puta Matariki ka rere Whānui.
Ko te tohu tēnā o te tau e!

Matariki reappears, Vega starts its flight. 
The new year begins!

A Matariki Story

Here's a little story about why we celebrate Matariki, the Māori New Year. Video produced by Maui Studios for The Wireless. This content is brought to you with funding support from NZ On Air.
The Wireless produces inspiring, insightful and entertaining stories for New Zealanders who have grown up in the digital age.

click to play 
A Matariki story

Downtown Coastal Grove Tour
Ka tūtaki ki ngā kaitiaki o ngā wāhi hou

19 June - 11 July 2021

Bookings essential - book here now 

Guided by Ngāti Whātua Ōrākei kaitiaki: Etienne Neho / Jyde Tamaariki

As part of the Matariki Festival, you have the opportunity to join two of the kaitiaki (guardians) managing the new coastal grove plantings within Te Wānanga and Quay Street as they discuss the aspirations of mana whenua who have been involved in the design of these spaces and the position, function and inter-relationships of these plantings. Through the active and ongoing management of these plantings; Ngāti Whātua Ōrākei are firmly and clearly expressing their mana whenua, their ahi-kā-tanga and kaitiakitanga (guardianship).

This event is brought to you by Auckland Council and the City Centre Targeted Ratepayers.

 [more info here at Heart of the City]

Project completion timelines

Quay Street Enhancement 

Quay Street Enhancement major works now complete and blessed by mana whenua. Street furniture installation until end-June 2021.

Te Wānanga
(Downtown Public Space)

Te Wānanga major works completed in June in time for mana whenua blessing programmed late-June. Te Wānanga will open to the public early-July 2021. 

Te Ngau o Horotiu 
(Ferry Basin Redevelopment)

Te Ngau o Horotiu is undergoing sea trials until its public opening in early July 2021.
Area specific progress updates
Noise mitigation will be used for all loud activity, and access to properties will be maintained at all times.

Consented site working hours are: 
  • Monday to Friday 6.30am to 10.30pm
  • Saturday 7.00am to 11.00pm | Sunday 9.00am to 7.00pm. 
Quay Street enhancement
Princes Wharf to Britomart Place

Key updates

Next week:
  • Installation of four new Ngā Punawai Water Fountains along Quay Street commences next week.
Completed works:
  • The War Memorial Beacon (originally located outside Burger Boy) has returned to its new location on Quay Street.
  • The planting of all 135 native trees and underplanting of rain gardens (7000 new plants in total) is complete. Mahi toi elements are now displayed on Quay Street light poles, stone bench seating and areas of pavement. 
  • The coloured LED street lights are in full operation for everyone's evening viewing pleasure. Do watch out for them if you are coming in via the ferry as they look amazing!
  • Full footpath access along both sides of Quay Street is available.
  • The full length of the new cycle lane is open. Cyclists, drivers and pedestrians please be mindful of each other.
  • All new bus lanes are complete and in operation.
Grouting of WW2 War Memorial Beacon 
Somewhere under the rainbow
Te Wānanga 

Key updates

  • Sandblasting and sealing of the new deck, installation of bollards and light poles is now complete.
  • Installation of the custom designed furniture is now complete.
  • Installation of exterior balustrades and leaners around the new deck is now complete.
  • Installation of balustrades and hand rails around deck openings/viewing holes (apertures) will be complete by the end of June.
  • Installation of the blue heritage fence separating Te Wānanga from the northern footpath will be complete soon. Awaiting delivery of lamps.
  • Installation of the first Kupenga nets will commence end-June.
  • Te Wānanga will be open to the public early-July.
Above: New street furniture installation is now complete.
Finishing works continue on aperture balustrades that surround the heritage stairs.
Perfecting the holes in the balustrade design around the apertures/viewing holes
Fender piles to protect Te Wānanga.
Heritage fence separating Te Wānanga from northern footpath.
Te Ngau o Horotiu

Te Ngau o Horotiu project is an integral part of the $350 million Downtown Programme, and will see the creation of six new berths in the Ferry Basin.

It is another step towards modern, consolidated ferry infrastructure for Auckland. It will have improved accessibility and greater operational flexibility, which will help accommodate increased passenger numbers.

Te Ngau o Horotiu has just been handed over to Auckland Transport for commissioning and trials, and is expected to be open and operational for ferry passengers early July 2021.

Media Links
Public Transport Updates

Timetable updates (click to link)

Click here to read previous Downtown Programme updates
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The Downtown Programme team thank you for your patience. We listen to your feedback and work hard to minimise disruption.

Please contact us should you have any queries or concerns:
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