The 16,670m2 piece of land, adjoining Te Ngahere o Tawa (Forest of Tawa) and Spicer Forest, has important natural forest remnants and has been identified as a Significant Natural Area under the draft District Plan review.
Mayor Andy Foster says on behalf of the city, he is deeply grateful for this generous gift from the landowner who wishes to remain anonymous.
“This land will be another valuable addition to our Outer Green Belt, which is already such a precious resource for the whole of Wellington. We’ve been steadily working to complete the OGB including with recent purchases of the adjacent Te Ngahere o Tawa and 268 Ohariu Valley Road. Today Wellingtonians and visitors enjoy the Town Belt established 180 years ago. We also want people to be enjoying and appreciating the OGB in hundreds of years’ time from now.
“It’ll help us to provide protection around this important landscape and eco-systems, as well as being a future seed source for restoration planting.”
The owner has gifted it under the condition Wellington City Council will pay for the legal and survey costs required to make a separate title.
Acquisition of this land aligns with Council’s open space plans and policies including the Outer Green Belt Management Plan and Our Capital spaces, both of which are concerned with protecting and restoring the ecology of our natural spaces.
Councillor Teri O’Neill, Natural Environment portfolio leader, explains the benefits of acquiring the land.
“Public ownership means we can better protect and restore the shared natural environment than under land covenant or District Plan provisions. The gift is something unprecedented - and we would like to express our gratitude for the generosity of the transfer.
“As part of our Backyard Tāonga project, Wellington City Council is working hard with the community to deepen protections and understanding of the unique plants and ecological systems at risk all around our neighbourhoods, especially as we plan for growth."