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Urunga Tairāwhiti

Navigate Tairāwhiti

Navigate Tairāwhiti is a programme of 5 projects delivered together with tangata whenua and partner organisations.

The programme weaves together significant sites through storytelling and design to showcase our region's unique culture and heritage of first arrivals and great navigators.

Both public and privately-owned spaces are upgraded to include stories and elements to reflect the exceptional navigational feats of the first iwi who arrived and James Cook who arrived in 1769.

The 5 projects in the programme are:
  • Puhi Kai Iti/Cook Landing Site - 1000-year Walkway Bridge - starting September 2023
    Cook Landing Site and Te Maro sculpture - both completed.
  • Te Panuku Tu - Titirangi summit redevelopment
  • Titirangi maunga
  • Tupapa – historical interpretations
  • Inner harbour upgrade

1000-year walkway bridge

The project started as an upgrade of the existing Cook Landing site and connecting paths as part of the Navigate Tairāwhiti programme.

This walkway bridge is to connect the landing site to Titirangi across Rakaiatane Road. It will also link with tracks on the maunga to walkways around the inner harbour, which connect to walkways and cycleways to Wainui or to Kiwa Pools and the city beaches.

As you walk along this footbridge, the story of how our region evolved will be told to take you back across the last 1000 years.

It’s also important to bring the cone of vision back to this historical site so Te Kuri a Paoa/Young Nicks Head can be seen. The memorial Puhi Kai Iti used to have a view of Turanganui-a-Kiwa and Te Kuri a Paoa. However, over the past 100 years buildings have blocked that view.

Project funding
  • Lotteries Grant of $3.1 million - $2.68 million for the bridge and $389,000 for the Te Maro platform
  • Trust Tairāwhiti grant of $343,000.

The project was delayed by interruptions that included Covid-19 and cyclones.

Design, consenting and community engagement were completed for the bridge in 2019.  Currie Construction starts work at the end of September as the existing funding has to be used by next year.

Te Panuku Tū - Titirangi summit redevelopment

Council working in close partnership with Ngāti Oneone propose to build a space for cultural and educational activities. The project to restore the top of Tītīrangi – called Te Panuku Tū - was first mooted by Ngati Oneone and started with the removal of the Captain Cook statue and the observatory. More information on Te Panuku Tū

Completed projects

We’ve completed the landing site of the tipuna Maia.

The structure includes steel tukutuku panels, lighting and landscaping.

Construction began in January 2019 and was completed in time for the October Tuia 250 commemorations.

The project also included the installation of the 10x10m art piece across the landing site to acknowledge Te Maro, an Ngāti Oneone tipuna.

This project was a partnership between Gisborne District Council, Ngāti Oneone, and the Department of Conservation.

In partnership with Eastland Port we’ve transformed our waterfront to become a natural visitor destination and hospitality precinct.

Work included enhancements to new and upgraded parking, new public convenience, green spaces with landscaping, improved lighting and pedestrian and cycle-friendly connections.

Cultural elements are woven throughout the space to make it a destination where people can experience and reflect our navigational heritage.

The word ‘Tupapa’ describes the place where iwi share their stories, of iwi arrival and settlement and great navigators that have been passed down about the first people to navigate to and inhabit this place.

Developed by a partnership of the 4 Turanga iwi, people can take self-guided walks that connects sites from Waikanae Beach to Cook Landing Site and Titirangi maunga.  For more information about the heritage trail, see the Tupapa website

The restoration phase of our sacred maunga, as part of the Navigate Tairāwhiti programme is complete.

Through the Whaia Titirangi programme we’ve focused heavily on weed management and re-establishing the natural look of the maunga through native restoration.

This programme a collaborative effort between Ngāti Oneone and Council, has been running for 3 years with a primary focus on community engagement and conservation education that will enhance our kaitiakitanga.

Work will continue through the co-management agreement with Ngāti Oneone’s vision for Titirangi to Tuamotu Island. This is funded mostly by iwi, with Council support and currently focused on wider areas of Titirangi maunga.