Coastal wharf upgrades

We are planning an upgrade of the coastal wharves in the CBD and Eastern suburbs. This will help to ensure the structures are safe and can be used by the community for years to come.

About the project

The purpose of the upgrades is to ensure the wharves are maintained in structurally sound condition, and those beyond repair are demolished.

The upgrade is also important for contingency planning. In the event of an emergency, the wharves will allow continued access to the CBD and Eastern suburbs, even if roads are closed.

Work is expected to start in late 2019 / early 2020 and is likely to take 12-18 months.

The works have been funded in the Annual Plan budget 2019/2020 and are part of a 10-year investment strategy to ensure coastal structures are maintained appropriately.

Who we are working with

We are working closely with key stakeholders, including:

  • our treaty partners
  • Heritage New Zealand
  • Greater Wellington Regional Council.


In 2017, the council commissioned a detailed condition assessment report on coastal assets, which included engineering and diving surveys. The report identified a number of structures that required immediate intervention to retain their structural integrity.

In light of the report findings, we committed to a three-year upgrade of the coastal wharves in the Eastern suburbs. This has been funded in the Annual Plan budget 2019/2020.

Some of the wharves are identified heritage structures or have links to interesting historical events in Wellington Harbour. This means any repairs will need to use identical materials and structures to the original, replacing ‘like with like’ where possible. We are working closely with Heritage New Zealand on this.

Over the last twelve months, we have been working with external technical services to carry out a number of reports to support planning the repairs.

What needs to be done

Queens Wharf

The upgrade will include strengthening to around 50 piles and replacing some fendering. Work is expected to start in November 2019, with completion at the end of April 2020. The wharf will remain open while the works are carried out. 

Seatoun Wharf

The assessment identified an area of immediate concern with the outer section of the wharf. In the short term, we have been able to keep the majority of the structure open and in use by fencing off a section of the outer end. Engineers have advised that due to its age, condition and use, the wharf structure requires a substantial upgrade. They have prepared a preliminary design in conjunction with a heritage advisor. Building and resource consent applications have been prepared. Work is planned for the middle of 2020, dependent on contractor availability, and is expected to take 12-18 months. 

Cog Wharf, the Patent Slip Jetty and the Clyde Quay Boat Harbour Slipway

These structures were to be demolished, however in discussions with heritage advisors it was seen as more appropriate to repair and retain the Cog Park Wharf. The demolition of the Patent Slip jetty and the Clyde Quay Bot Harbour slipway will proceed as planned, due to their poor condition and the cost of rebuilding.

Karaka Bay Wharf

Some outer piles and a number of bearers need to be repaired or replaced. Works should take approximately one month (dates to be confirmed).

Project timing

With the exception of Queens Wharf, dates for these works are yet to be confirmed.

The timeframe for each of structure will depend on a number of processes. We will update this page as more information becomes available.

Need help?

Peter Hemsley
Parks, Sports and Recreation

Phone: (04) 499 4444